We’re building a stronger library to power collaboration.
Connecticut College has embarked on a $9.875 million renovation and expansion of Charles E. Shain Library that will transform the educational and social life of the campus community.
The new Shain will provide more comfortable, usable, technology-rich study spaces as well as new tools and services to foster digital scholarship. The project will also dramatically improve the library’s appearance and ambience.
Renovations began in the summer of 2014. All of the information you need about the project can be found on these pages, and you can even follow the progress via webcam.
All this hard work will pay off in Fall 2015.
October 16, 2014
During the SGA-sponsored #Shainreno Exposed event on Oct. 10, attendees wrote down questions or comments about the project. The renovation team’s answers are below. And remember, if you have questions or comments, use email@example.com.
Will there still be plenty of cubbies? I love cubbies! (Especially cubbies with outlets and near windows.)
The existing cubbies will be redistributed throughout the study spaces. Additional electrical outlets are being added in all renovated areas to increase the access to outlets.
Just a compliment: You are all killing it. My only regret is that, as a senior, I won’t enjoy the amazing new building.
Thanks for the compliment! We do understand that the seniors are paying the highest price for not having library services located in Shain this year. We hope that you will make plans to visit and tour the library once it is completed and open to everyone.
I love all the new collaborative spaces, but individual study nooks are important as well. Will we still have many of those?
Yes, individual study spaces, such as small tables and cubbies, are still going to be available. The existing carrels will return and/or be redeployed throughout the building. There are also plans for several smaller study tables to be added. The project contains several different types of study spaces (cubbies, chairs, tables and group spaces, to name a few) that should accommodate different types of student and visitor study preferences.
October 15, 2014
October 10, 2014
Thanks to SGA for hosting #Shainreno Exposed, a great opportunity for students to meet the professionals behind the design, construction and coordination of the Shain Library renovation. Watch this space for answers to the questions posed on paper at the event.
September 18, 2014
Students, faculty and staff have been asked to test drive sample chairs and help choose the future furniture for Shain Library. Test drivers are trying out three different sets of chairs to find the best fit for three different areas of the renovated library.
September 12, 2014
The first structural component was put into place for the larger, light-filled facade of Shain Library.
August 26, 2014
But the concrete facade was removed from Shain Library on Aug. 19. See the video above. Soon, the front of the building will feature a large bank of windows that will let in much more natural light.
August 20, 2014
The following message was sent to students on Aug. 20 from Ulysses B. Hammond, vice president for administration:
Before you return to campus for the 2014-15 academic year, I wanted to give you an update on the renovations to Shain Library and what it means for you.
Work started this summer both inside and outside the building, and you’ll come back to find Shain surrounded by construction fences that allow us to maintain a safe environment on campus. The “moat” in front of the building has been filled in to allow for the installation of a beautiful plaza, and the facade of the building has been removed, to be replaced by a large bank of windows that will let in much more natural light. Existing windows were removed and will be replaced by larger windows, and interior walls are being put into place for the new collaborative study spaces, classrooms and the Technology Commons.
There are many exciting changes ahead, and construction will continue throughout the year. Exterior work — which will include removing the roof of the building, among other projects — will continue through the end of November. On occasion, heavy equipment will be used, and there is the possibility the work will generate some noise. Every effort is being made to minimize disruption to our community, but some disturbances can be expected during such large-scale projects. We will alert you in advance of any substantial work that is scheduled to take place so you can plan study time and place accordingly.
After November, most of the renovation work will take place inside the sealed library and have little impact on the surrounding buildings and areas.
The contractors work from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays. Again, they know they are on a residential campus and make every effort to minimize any disruption their work could generate. The same firm managed construction of the science center at New London Hall and they are very familiar with Connecticut College and the needs of our community.
We have identified many alternate study spaces that offer opportunities to study away from the library. A guide and map showing these study spaces, as well as the locations of library services and other helpful information, will be distributed by your housefellow or floor governor upon your return to campus. And you can always find vital information and updates at www.conncoll.edu/shainreno.
NO PAIN, NO SHAIN. Our lighthearted motto during this project has a kernel of truth: There could be some occasional distractions while the library is renovated. But when Shain reopens in time for the Fall 2015 semester, Connecticut College will have a state-of-the-art library, full of technology-rich study spaces and tools and services to foster digital scholarship, as well as a beautiful look, comfortable furnishings and welcoming atmosphere.
Thank you in advance for helping make this project one of the most important in the College’s history.
August 1, 2014
The first of several windows to be removed from Shain Library was taken out on July 31. The replacement windows will be much larger to allow more natural light into the building. The window openings are covered during this part of construction to protect the books still inside.
July 25, 2014
The space behind the new retaining wall in front of Shain Library has been filled it. This area will become the new walkway and outdoor plaza.
July 23, 2014
The George I. Alden Trust has awarded Connecticut College a $175,000 grant to enhance and expand technological resources available in Shain Library. The Alden Trust supports higher education by focusing on small, independent undergraduate colleges recognized for educational excellence and strong leadership.
The grant will support the state-of-the-art upgrades that are part of the ongoing renovations, including the addition of more comfortable, usable, technology-rich study spaces as well as new tools and services to foster digital scholarship.