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Regenstein Reconfiguration Update

The Joseph Regenstein Library has served as the principal library for the Humanities and Social Sciences for twenty-five years. Between 1987 and 1990 the University Library engaged in an extensive planning effort to review its programs and services.

One outcome was the development of the Regenstein Reconfiguration Project to address the physical and programmatic needs of Regenstein and prepare it for service in the 21st century. In late 1991 the Joseph Regenstein Foundation awarded a five-year, $2.61 million grant to support the initial phase of the Reconfiguration Project. In August 1995 the Boston architectural firm of Shepley Bulfinch Richardson and Abbott (SBRA) was engaged to conduct a thorough analysis of Regenstein and propose options for the renovation and renewal of the building. The plan reflects a redefinition of service and new programs focusing on the needs of undergraduates, as well as a continuing effort to meet the research support needs of graduate students and the faculty. SBRA and the Library Administration spent seven months developing and refining plans in consultation with Library staff, a Faculty Advisory Committee chaired by Chris Gamwell (Divinity), and University Facilities Services. In April 1996 a conceptual plan was presented to the University Space Planning and Capital Budget Committee, chaired by Provost Geoffrey Stone. Review and recommendation by the Committee is currently in progress.

The University Library will engage in an extensive review of the final plan with the faculty and other elements of the University community. When this process is complete and funding has been secured, the architects will initiate the detailed design process and construction will begin.

For more information, contact Gerald Munoff, Deputy Director of the Library, at 702-8749 or gmun@midway.uchicago.edu">gmun@midway.uchicago.edu.

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