May 17, 2022

The “Great Book Migration” Underway at the University of Virginia

From the University of Virginia:

This fall marks the transition period in the preparations to close the University of Virginia’s central Alderman Library for much-needed renovation and expansion.

That means 1.7 million books and materials are being moved from Alderman to nearby Clemons Library or the Ivy Stacks, the off-site shelving facility located a mile from central Grounds.

Yes, the Great Book Migration has begun. Everything should be moved by December in anticipation of Alderman closing in May for about three years.


Some extra workers and the companies, Backstage Library Works and Overton & Associates, are helping with this huge job.

Alderman Library opened with a print collection of more than 300,000 books, and the stated capacity to hold double that number. Now the collection has reached about 1.7 million items that have to be moved.


Ivy Stacks is described online as “a high-density storage and retrieval facility.” It holds more than 1 million books and other materials. It was expanded in 2017, doubling its storage space in anticipation of the Alderman renovation. The facility is outfitted with solar panels to reduce its energy footprint.

All of the materials housed there are available to be checked out through Virgo, the library’s online catalog.

Read the Complete Article, View MANY Photos

See Also: Alderman Library to Close in May 2020 and Reopen by Spring of 2023 (April 24, 2019)

See Also: Alderman Renovation: What to Expect in 2019 (April 24, 2019; via U. of Virginia Library)

See Also: Schematic Design For Alderman Library Approved by UVA Board of Visitors

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.