Morris Library begins to regain books

Volumes of educational texts are on their way to becoming part of Morris Library’s book collection again.

The library staff has started to move books and shelves from storage in the McLafferty Annex to the basement floor of Morris Library.

Karl Bullock, a senior from Chicago studying journalism, loads books onto a cart Sunday at the McLafferty Annex in Carbondale. Bullock, along with other workers, has been moving books to the front of the building in preparation for the transfer to their new location in the basement of Morris Library. Bullock said more than $1 million is being spent for the transfer. jessica tezak | Daily Egyptian

A majority of books were put into storage during library renovations three years ago and have stayed there ever since. Students and faculty have to wait for requested books to be delivered to the library. McLafferty was also open for half-days to the public for browsing, but is now closed because of the book-moving process.

Though most of the move is still being planned, some progress has been made, David Carlson, dean of libraries, said.

Carlson said the closure of McLafferty to the public is the first step in the moving process. He said McLafferty is the only storage area where deconstruction of bookshelves has occurred.

McLafferty Annex closed down Wednesday because moving the shelves and books was considered too dangerous for students to walk around safely, he said, and the library plans to have the University of Illinois send copies of the Annex’s unreachable books to counter this problem.

Floor rails are being installed in Morris Library to allow for electronic bookshelves in the basement. The electronic bookshelves run across the rails so the shelves can be right next to each other and save space.

Carlson said the electronic bookshelves will double the storage space in the basement.

Some bookshelves being moved from the storage areas are too high for Morris Library ceilings, Carlson said, and they do not meet fire regulations. He said this problem has caused the library to consider finding other shelving methods.

He said while there isn’t a set plan for which storage building to move from next, he hopes there will be progress made on the sixth and seventh floors of the library, which have been incomplete since the renovation.

A majority of students do not mind ordering books from the holding facilities, Carlson said.

But Patrick Hogan, a junior from Wheeling studying horticulture, said he thinks the transfer process of books from the annexes is not efficient and looks forward to the return of more books to the library.

Hogan said he visits the library once every two weeks and doesn’t check out books because of Morris Library’s limited options.

DeQuentin Webber, a sophomore from Chicago studying architecture, said he also thinks the book transfer is a tedious process. Webber visits the library at least six times a week, he said, and he can’t wait for the books to be moved back to the library so he can access them more easily.

Other students do not have issues with the books’ location in the annexes. Greg Gault, a freshman from Buffalo Grove studying sports administration, said he goes to the library about four times a week and does not find an issue with the books being located primarily off campus. The books returning to Morris would be a great thing and would provide more convenience, he said.

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