Doe/Moffitt/Bancroft Strategic Plan:
Program and Facilities

Presented to the Space Assignments and Capital Improvements Committee
December 12, 1997


The Doe/Moffitt/Bancroft Library facilities have been undergoing seismic renovation since January 2, 1992, and the various phases of these renovations are expected to continue until approximately 2004. The major phases of these projects include the following:

Phase I: Seismic strengthening of the Moffitt Library and Construction of a new underground stack addition to replace the seismically unsafe Main Stack (completed);

Phase II: Demolition of the old Main Stack and construction of Seismic Shear walls surrounding the former stack perimeter (to be completed March 1998);

Phase III: Seismic strengthening of the North Facade of Doe Library (underway);

Phase IV: Seismic strengthening of the Library Annex, housing The Bancroft Library and other services and operations (to begin in early 2000s).

[For more information on Phases 1-4, see "Building the Libraries at Berkeley"]

The seismic projects have resulted in both temporary and permanent relocation of many services and operations, temporary closures, and some curtailment of services. Despite, or perhaps encouraged by, the disruption and inconvenience, The Library has engaged in a comprehensive long-range program and space planning effort to ensure that the ultimate results of the project-driven changes will be improved services to faculty and students as well as greater staff efficiency and productivity. The master-planning effort has been led by Library Architect Fred Yasaki and has included all managers and affected staff. Public and staff space allocations have been rationalized within existing and new buildings to improve access to library services and collections. New and improved services for the campus community are being designed with active participation of faculty and students.

[For detailed reports on construction since September 1996, see "Library Construction"]

Goals of the Space Plan:

Improve Research Support
Strengthen Undergraduate Services
Improve staff productivity
Increase space available to The Bancroft Library

The Doe/Moffitt/Annex complex was constructed between 1907 and 1970. Incremental and ad hoc changes to space allocation and utilization over the years led to inefficiencies in processing operations and poor organization of services within the Doe building. Moreover, automation of the card catalogs created opportunities to use the historic rooms (the former Loan Hall and Subject Catalog Hall) to establish new kinds of research support services, and the new stack addition provided a much needed connection between the Moffitt and the Doe/Annex buildings, enabling researchers - both faculty and students - to use the services in the four facilities more effectively and efficiently. Following is a description of the various programs and spacial reorganizations that have been implemented or are in the planning process.

Improve Research Support

The Doe and Bancroft Libraries, as well as the Main Stacks are envisioned as the primary research collections and services for humanists and social scientists on the Berkeley campus. Within Doe, faculty and librarians have worked together to create the following new services designed to improve the research environment for faculty, graduate students, and independent scholars; although tailored to the needs of the clientele named above, the services are also open to undergraduate students undertaking research:

The Government and Social Sciences Information Service occupies the former Loan Hall. It represents a consolidation of services formerly provided by the Government Documents Department and portions of the Main Reference Service.

The Humanities Graduate Service, which was relocated to Moffitt as part of a seismic surge will return to the Doe Library within the next 18 months. The new service, renamed the Humanities Reference and Research Collection, will occupy space on the west side of Doe Library's second floor. This space is adjacent to related services for International and Area Studies and the Government and Social Sciences Information Service. In a second phase, as yet unfunded, faculty have recommended that the former Subject Catalog Hall be reprogrammed as an Electronic Resources Service. This concept and program will continue to evolve, but will most likely incorporate a large number of powerful networked computers, multimedia authoring tools and facilities, assistance with electronic publishing projects conducted by faculty and graduate students, and access to digital humanities resources including text and visual resources.

Librarians, faculty and the Dean of International and Area Studies have worked closely together to design new services and facilities in the former Main Reading Room. These new services, called the International and Area Studies Reading Room will consolidate the Carl G. Rosberg Library collections and services with similar resources in the Main Library.

In addition, subject specialist librarians who are now dispersed throughout Doe and the Annex will be relocated to the south wing of the second floor of Doe Library where they will be readily available to assist researchers.

These projects will be coordinated with the seismic upgrade project starting this year and ending in February 1999. We look forward to completion of the program upgrades for these service programs within the next three-five years.

A final major opportunity for improvement to research support resides in the Doe Core, the former location of the Main Stacks. It has been proposed that the space be redesigned as a Fine Arts and Visual Resources service. This new service would likely combine features of the current Art History/Classics service, the undergraduate visual arts resources in Moffitt, and the Main Stack collections in Art, as well as encompass other collections and services. A small group of faculty and librarians is developing a proposal for this possible new service.

In the longer term, "flooring through" the Doe core could create 30,000 additional square feet of space for collections and services.

Strengthen Undergraduate Services

As on most university campuses, the role and usage of the Undergraduate library and its collections has changed in recent years in response to changes in pedagogy and the increasing availability of networked resources. The focus of library planning for undergraduate support services has been threefold:

development of teaching services to help students learn how to gain access to, evaluate, and use information of all types and in all formats;

renovation of the Moffitt Library into a center for undergraduate services, resources and programs;

improving services to help faculty and graduate student instructors in their teaching, and to inform faculty and graduate students of new information resources in their fields.

The Teaching Library was established in 1993, under the extraordinary leadership of Ellen Meltzer. The Teaching Library is a program, not a place, and works in collaboration with faculty to develop courses in support of undergraduate teaching. Although a small core of librarians and support staff are housed in the Moffitt Library, Teaching Library programs are conducted throughout the Library's branches. Last year more than 20,000 students were reached through group instructional sessions. At present, The Library's capacity to provide teaching services to students through drop-in clinics and course-integrated instruction is limited by lack of facilities. Thus creation of classroom facilities in the "seismic corners" of Moffitt is one of our two highest facilities upgrade priorities (the other is expansion of the Media Resources Center). Completed two years ago, the three existing classrooms are fully booked, often until 7:00 pm during the semester.

The Information Gateway provides a different kind of place in which the Teaching Library can help students learn how to do library research. All too frequently, faculty complain that term papers are written solely from Internet Resources, and that students do not know how to do library research in the print and special collections. Moffitt's Information Gateway is a staffed information center in which librarians help students find the resources they need, refer them to appropriate non-networked resources (e.g., print, archival, media) or direct them to specialized research services as necessary. The Gateway leads directly into the Main Stacks, a repository of 2.5 million volumes which are heavily used by both faculty and students. At the Gateway, students receive personalized help, complementing the knowledge they gain in Teaching Library programs. (It should also be noted that the Gateway provides welcome relief to the specialized branches as well; before the Gateway was completed, faculty and graduate students complained that heavy undergraduate use of library workstations was hindering access for researchers; specialist librarians' time was being spent answering general questions from undergraduate students rather than helping upper division majors, graduate students, or faculty. Thus, the Gateway indirectly improves research services as well).

The Multi-media Resource Center currently occupies a very small space on the first floor of Moffitt. Increasing course-related use of film, audio and other media resources is causing long lines of students waiting for access to the Center. A very high priority is expansion of the Center, and The Library has received minor capital project funds to double its size in the coming fiscal year. The long-range plan for Moffitt envisions a comprehensive multi-media facility on the first floor, including viewing facilities, expanded collections, multi-media publishing and authoring facilities, and, possibly, instructional technology support.

Moffitt will continue to support undergraduate course reserves, although we hope within the next year to make many of these materials available online. Remaining open are questions about the long-term shape of undergraduate collections within Moffitt, and within the next year, a task force of librarians and faculty will address these issues. At present, the Moffitt collections are housed on the first, fourth, and fifth floors of Moffitt, with overflow collections shelved in the Main (research) stacks. The size, nature, and location of undergraduate collections will doubtlessly be a continuing evolution. (It should be noted that Moffitt's upper floors have been suggested as a possible site for surging the Chemistry, Physics, and Math libraries, all of which have received a downgrade in seismic safety rating. Should Moffitt be used for that purpose, alternative means of providing undergraduate services in other venues would be developed.)

Examples of the support services to faculty currently provided include course-integrated library instruction programs, faculty seminars in the use of new scholarly resources; and an experimental program called the Humanities Server Project, funded jointly by the Dean of Humanities and The Library. We hope that additional services can be developed and, in cooperation with faculty, have made several proposals about long-range plans. With the very rapid changes in student and faculty needs, academic program design, technology, and modes of teaching, the Moffitt plan will continue to evolve. In fact, in all likelihood, it would not be desirable for a set of programs to be reified in perpetuity; rather the services, collections, programs, and facilities in Moffitt will better serve the campus if they are as responsive as possible to the changing environment on campus.

Improve staff productivity

The timing of The Library's seismic projects has, in a certain sense, been fortuitous in that a succession of cuts to The Library's operations budget have required continuous re-engineering to improve productivity and reduce costs. The relocation of the loading dock to Moffitt required that staff who process incoming collections (ordering, receiving, cataloging, serial check-in) be relocated near to the dock. Therefore, staff formerly located in four separate departments on two floors of Doe were consolidated into a single department onto Moffitt's second floor. Workflows were completely redesigned, staff reduced through attrition, labor-intensive operations automated or outsourced, and recurring annual operations budget savings of more than $500,000 realized. Through this consolidation, not only was valuable public space in Doe Library regained for scholars, consolidation of personnel and technical processing functions enable continuous re-engineering of those operations.

Similarly, The Library has found external funding to renovate portions of the Bancroft Library to consolidate processing staff. This facilities work can proceed independently from the seismic renovation of Bancroft, although care must be exercised to ensure that the project will not be undone by seismic retrofit project changes.

Increase space available to The Bancroft Library

The Bancroft Library is among the most crowded in The Library System. Through consolidation of Bancroft processing functions and relocation of general library operations to Doe, we hope to expand facilities available for Bancroft's collections and users. Bancroft's reading room is the most heavily-used special collections services in the United States. At times, faculty and students must queue for access to study space and research collections within the reading room. Moreover, storage of a large portion of the collections offsite creates delays for scholars. Although the seismic project will create a safer environment, funds must be found for more extensive program-driven renovations (heating, ventilation, air conditioning, humidity and improved security controls as well as increased space for special projects and instructional activities). It now appears likely that realization of improved space for Bancroft users will not materialize until the middle of the next decade. With this seismic project, called Doe Phase 4, all staff and collections housed in the Annex will have to be relocated. Because the Library Systems Office and the computer center will be extremely expensive to move, the Library has reserved space in Doe Library in order that they be relocated just once, thereby both saving project costs for surge and increasing Annex space available to Bancroft. As funding and schedule for the Doe Phase 4 project becomes more definite, more detailed study of surge alternatives for collections and staff must be explored.

Copyright © 1997 by the Library, University of California, Berkeley. All rights reserved.
Authored by: Susan F. Rosenblatt, Deputy University Librarian
Document maintained by: Ann Moen
Last update 1/8/98. Server manager: Contact