A project to provide the University of East London with a new learning facility has reached completion.
The Stratford Campus Library is a brand new facility for the University and replaces a former Grade II* Listed building that was previously in operation at the Stratford Campus. The new building increases the site’s library space from 1700 square metres to 3000 sq metres and offers students a range of modern services.
Work began on the project in November 2011 and reached completion in June 2013. Volkerfitzpatrick was the main contractor on the new library, whilst Hopkins Architects provided all architectural services.
Commenting on the new library, Project Manager, Mark Janko, said:
“This is a bespoke library, expertly designed by Hopkins Architects. The new learning facility was implemented in order to increase the size of the Campus’ library and to provide a building more appropriate for 21st Century learning.”
The three-storey, concrete frame building includes exposed concrete soffits, 500mm raised floors and more than 400 square metres of solar panels. The building also benefits from a cool air supply which comes into the building via rooftop air handling units.
The ground floor of the building includes 48 open-access PCs; a collection of interactive pods; three group study rooms; a staff area; and an assisted technology room. Meanwhile, the first floor is a more traditional library space, which includes a number of quiet rooms.
Additional features of the new library include a self-serving book sorter and a help desk. In addition, the new library is a low-energy building, consuming no more than 100 kilowatt hours, per metre squared, per year.
Whilst work took place on the project the Stratford Campus operated as usual, with very few disruptions to student life.
“The site was quite discreet and most of the time we were able to work without any major disruptions.”
The building was designed as part of a masterplan which formed part of the outlined planning permission of the scheme. The masterplan included a second courtyard, dubbed the Learning Courtyard and a 24/7 social space which is situated in front of the library.
“Even before work was completed on the building everyone could tell that it was going to become a much appreciated facility. The library has a studious feel to it, which is great, and the feedback has been very encouraging.”