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Week One: Eve of Destruction

May 24-30

Library personnel carefully bubble-wrapped video players and monitors then moved them–along with microform equipment–to temporary locations around the library to minimize the equipment’s exposure to dust.  They removed mobile furniture and desk lamps and took down the posters and wall clock.

The contractor who had, years earlier, installed the LR’s Buss system–the electrical system that relays audio and video signals from the office to various stations in the listening area–arrived on Wednesday to remove wiring from stations that would no longer be needed and to secure the stations that would remain from damage during the renovation.  Electricians also rewired lighting. removed electrical outlets from the wall to be demolished, and made other behind-the-scenes preparations.

On Thursday, workers removed the cabinets from the Microfilm room.  Some cabinets were placed in the hallways nearby for return to the room once the renovation is complete.  The rest were permanently moved to other sites.

The first signs warning patrons that the renovation was beginning went up on LR doors and near the entry to Burling Library.  Then, a pleasant surprise.  Actual demolition–which wasn’t scheduled to begin until the Tuesday after Memorial Day–was going to start two days early.  Fortunately, staff removal of computers and other vulnerable equipment was already underway.  Student assistants and staff quickly plastic-covered equipment that would remain inside the LR office as well as the door and windows of the office, then completed their moves to temporary work areas nearby.

Once contractors placed plastic to demarcate their work area and to minimize dust, they removed the old listening stations and most of the “Star Trek”-inspired chairs that had been bolted to the floor.  They stripped the wood trim from the walls for use elsewhere in the library.  The door that used to separate the LR from the Microfilm Room was removed as well.

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