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Regenstein Building Maintenance

Lighting Replacement

During the 1996 Winter and Spring Quarters over 10,000 fluorescent lights in Regenstein's Reading Rooms, faculty studies and staff areas were replaced by the University's Office of Energy Planning and Management with more energy-efficient tubes. Old magnetic ballasts were replaced with electronic ballasts were necessary to further improve energy efficiency. The new lights have a warmer color balance but a higher color rendering that should improve the overall quality of light for most users. Planning is also currently underway to replace the fluorescent tubes, magnetic ballasts and light timers in the Regenstein stacks before the end of 1996. When completed, the cost of electricity for lighting Regenstein should be reduced by up to 25%.

Humidity Controls Upgraded

Maintaining correct levels of humidity in all library buildings is important for the preservation of books and the comfort of people. To improve the Regenstein building's environmental controls, funds from the Regenstein Foundation's Reconfiguration grant were used early in 1996 to install 46 new temperature/humidity sensors throughout the building, run a steam line to the mechanical penthouse, install new steam injectors on all the air handler units, and tie the new system into the computer that monitors and maintains the building's environmental conditions. For the first time humidity levels in the Reading Rooms and faculty studies wing will be monitored and automatically adjusted during the dry winter season.

Freight and Stacks Elevators Refurbished

In addition to the need for passenger elevators to transport library users to Regenstein's seven floors, large quantities of books and other materials must be moved throughout the building daily. Regenstein has two freight elevators for this purpose, both of which are in need of substantial renovation. Using grant funds from the Regenstein Foundation during the summer and fall of 1996 these elevators will be converted from pneumatic to electronic controls, have mechanical and hydraulic parts replaced and be brought into compliance with the Americans With Disabilities Act. As part of this project the small passenger elevator in the general stacks will be upgraded as well, but users should see no effect on library services otherwise.

For more information, contact Thomas Dorst, Regenstein Reconfiguration Project Manager, at 702-4772 or tjdorst@midway.uchicago.edu">tjdorst@midway.uchicago.edu.

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