The Arizona State University community celebrated the progressing transformation of its largest library at a groundbreaking ceremony Friday morning.
Speaking at the ceremony, ASU President Michael Crow said the redesign of Hayden Library is one step in many to ensure that the library remains at the center of the ASU knowledge enterprise.
“There will always be at the heart of every great learning organization a library,” said Crow. “In the core of the core of the core of this enterprise is the library — the place of mediated, articulated, verifiable and quantifiable knowledge, not random dither. You cannot have a core of a learning enterprise without that.”
Currently under comprehensive renovation with completion scheduled for January 2020, Hayden Library’s five-story tower will feature new classrooms, state-of-the-art learning labs, engaging print collections, and study space to accommodate more than 2,000 students.
“The library will take many forms: physical, digital and philosophical,” said Crow. “Who knows how libraries will end up in the next hundreds of years, but they’re not going away.”
“Libraries are books, and much, much more beside,” said University Librarian Jim O’Donnell. “Libraries are central to the educational enterprise — the critical link connecting students to the university and to the world of knowledge.”
Features of the Hayden Library “reinvention” include:
- An above-ground entrance with multiple points of access
- Six classrooms and more than 1,000 additional seats for students to study, collaborate and learn
- Actively curated and community-led print collections on every floor
- Rotating exhibits that showcase the university’s innovations and scholarly work
- Main-floor access to ASU Library’s distinctive and special collections, especially rich in documenting and illustrating the history and cultures of Arizona and all its peoples
- A suite of learning and research spaces specializing in data analysis, creativity and maker culture, technology learning, research support and geographic information systems
- Student support services integrated on every floor
“Everybody knows what a library is — or thinks they do,” said O’Donnell. “At ASU our library transforms old collections and services with new kinds of information, new ways of finding information, and new ways to use what we have.”
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