Does the Building Still Matter? Usage Patterns in New, Expanded, and Renovated Libraries, 1995–2002

Harold B. Shill, Shawn Tonner

Abstract

Since the mid-1990s, more than 390 academic institutions have constructed new libraries or have expanded, renovated, or reconfigured an existing library. Given current concern about the future of libraries and the nature of space needs, it is important to know what impact these improvements have had on use of the physical library. Using responses from a 68-item Web survey conducted in early 2003, this article examines the impact of building improvements on usage of the physical facility. Recommendations for facility planning are offered, and implications for the “library as place” debate are explored. This report is a companion piece to an article published in the November 2003 issue.

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