College of Charleston Adopts Compact Shelving

When the College of Charleston (CofC), the oldest institution of higher education in South Carolina and one of the oldest in the United States, recently opened the $30 million, 140,000 square-foot Addlestone Library, it was with an eye to the future and a plan to maximize growth of the collections without having to increase the size of the new building.

The old library had run out of space 10 years before the new facility was built, so Dean David Cohen and Director Claire Fund, after evaluating the future needs of their expanding collection, had to find a solution. Library architect Michael Cohen, AIA, of Boston’s Fletcher, Harkness, Cohen, Moneyhun, Inc., recommended high-density (compact) mobile shelving as a solution for the future.

The Addlestone Library currently shelves over 500,000 volumes, with about a third of the collection on compact shelving and potential capacity for a million volumes. Bound Journals in the public space on the second floor are housed in three banks of Spacesaver powered systems, which move at the touch of a button and feature AisleGuard® as the passive safety system and PowerLink as the monitoring system, assuring optimal operation. Across the floor, some portion of the general book collection is housed in compact shelving and the balance is on stationary cantilever shelving.

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