Library Services


Library Services building improvements 2018

3 December 2018

Over the summer, UCL Library Services, UCL Estates and ISD completed a number of projects to improve the staff and student experience. These works were made possible thanks to a grant of £1.2m from the Central Estates Strategy Board in addition to regular Maintenance funding.

UCL Science Library entry gates, 2018

Highlights from the works are listed below:

Science Library Entrance & Help Point

The entrance of the UCL Science Library has been remodelled with new gates to improve accessibility for wheelchair users and allow easier flow of visitors. The suspended ceiling was removed to allow natural light in the entrance hall and LED lighting has been installed. New height-adjustable desks were installed for ISD and Library Help Point teams to improve accessibility and staff workspace.

Feedback from the manager:

The team are very happy with the new Help Point and the way in which our vision for a desk that works for both staff and customers has been realised. Each work space is height adjustable and there is plenty of room for staff to work with a keyboard, mouse, piles of books and other types of material. The screens are also adjustable and may be swivelled to enable customers to see the screen. The customers also have ample space to fill in forms, rest their piles of books on or simply to rest their bags. The entrance lobby has been vastly improved. The removal of a false ceiling has transformed the space into a lighter and more welcoming environment and we now have Gallagher controlled gates which give access to wheelchair users and have been reconfigured to improve the flow of traffic.

UCL Science Library entrance and Help Point

Science Library Basement – Digitisation Suite

In the Science Library basement, the Digitisation Suite was relocated to a better space for scanning Special  Collections material and for teaching and research.

Bartlett Library

Users of the Bartlett Library will notice a transformation of the reception area. The old help desk has been removed with a new Help Point installed. The wall behind the desk has been removed to enable natural light to flow. New LED lights have been installed in the reception area. The bookable space has been relocated away from the quiet study area. There is a new staff reception area installed and 8 study spaces with power and data were added in the quiet study area.

Interior of the Bartlett Library

From one of the Librarians:

We’re really pleased with our new reception area, which is now flooded with natural light and much more welcoming. The space works well for both staff and students, and we’ve received a lot of positive verbal feedback from library users, including the Bartlett Student Experience Officer who told us she is impressed by the way we’ve created a greater quantity and quality of space for students to study in, with more desks, improved furniture and increased levels of natural light

Language and Speech Science (LaSS) Library

In LaSS, height-adjustable desks have been installed to allow wheelchair access and new staff student collaboration desk was installed. A new window has been installed in the reception area to allow better natural light, and now power to desks has been installed. The work has been completed and the refurbishment has been received well by students and staff.

UCL Language and Speech Science Library, reception area

Feedback from the manager:

The Library foyer has been redesigned by the team with the needs of the student in mind. The new layout incorporates a much needed, flexible student work table, designed for making resources, quick printing from laptop loans, and a space where the library team can work through enquiries in a one to one environment. The foyer design and added window has opened up an under-used storage space, transforming it in to a designated MFD and UX (User Experience) area. The new Library desk incorporates a green inset panel and is height adjustable, making it more accessible to staff and wheelchair users. The new design has been very well received by customers, with the new student desk in use five minutes after installation! The team are also pleased to see their vision for the space realised, even though the team have a smaller Library desk, we have created a flexible, accessible environment, to deal with customers when they need our help

Christmas 2018 and the New Year

Further works are planned to improve the Help Point area in the UCL Main Library, and at the Royal Free Medical Library, where new furniture is being fitted on the ground floor during the Christmas period, as part of continuous improvement of our library buildings. In February 2019, the Student Centre will open up 1,000 additional learning spaces and a new Student Enquiries Centre which will bring together a range of student services provided by UCL.