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Salient. Victoria University Students' Paper. Vol. 26, No. 4. Monday, April 8, 1963

Arts Block is Steadily Abuilding

page 8

Arts Block is Steadily Abuilding

The new £850,000, 10-storey Library and Arts building will be ready for students by the end of next year.

This was the confident prediction of Mr. Millar the Chief Librarian, when interviewed about the new building.

It is intended that the library will ultimately take up all the space in the building but temporarily a substantial part of it will be used for other purposes—mainly staff studies.

Besides the library, the block will provide storage for 500,000 books, 140 studies for members of the academic staff, and classrooms for 1000 students.

A novel feature of the library will be the dispersal of the stack-room areas. Normally, reading rooms and stack rooms are kept separate, but the new library will be quite different.

The stacks of books will occupy a central position on each floor, with tables for reading around the perimeter of the rooms. This will be in line with the general aim of the reader and the books as close together as possible.

The library will take up the first five floors. The two major reading rooms are on the lowest level shown in the photos. One will be a reference reading room with seating for 100 and perhaps easy chairs on which students may relax. At the other end there will be an undergraduate study hall with multiple copies of much-needed books.

Between these two reading halls will be a large catalogue hall which will probably include exhibitions and displays.

On the roof terrace level will be a big periodicals room with space for 30,000 bound books.

The third floor will be devoted to one large room for the exclusive use of advanced students. It will be limited to third year students and over. Other students will not have access to this room but may arrange to borrow books from it. There will be room for 60.000 volumes on this floor and seating for 320.

Above: View of basement area.

Above: View of basement area.

Above this are floors for staff studies and the Mathematics Department who will be sharing their quarters with the Applied Mathematics Dept. of D.S.I.R.

The first floor beneath ground level will contain the Law Library room. This library will operate completely independent to the main library with its own librarian, catalogue and entrance. Law students will have their own reading room with space for 18,000 volumes.

At the very bottom of the building will be a big stack room which will provide storage for 112,000 volumes. There will also be a number of small carrells for individuals engaged in research of an advanced nature.

On the seaward side will be a documentary reproduction room for micro-filming and photo-stats. An innovation will be a bindery for periodicals and for repairs to books. In the past this work has been sent out and has sometimes caused inconvenience and delay. A staff of three will be employed. Both Otago and Auckland Universities have their own binderys.

Below: Artist's impression of the finished building.

Below: Artist's impression of the finished building.

Right: Lifting gear for placing building components.

Right: Lifting gear for placing building components.