In the past, libraries emphasized quiet spaces for individual study. While the renovated Allan Price Science Commons and Research Library still has those areas, it also provides numerous open areas for collaboration along with access to a range of information from all scientific fields and sources. With specially-equipped, discipline-specific rooms for biology, chemistry, computer science, human physiology, geology, and physics, the 36,000 SF, $17M renovation has plenty of “WOW” factor.
“We are thrilled. We’re already seeing an impressive increase in the numbers of people using this library. They’re excited by the new services and technologies, and faculty members are quickly finding new ways to use them in their teaching and research.” — University of Oregon Libraries Dean Adriene Lim
The facility also showcases a “big data” visualization lab, with audio, video, display, conferencing, collaboration, presentation, and control systems. The data visualization lab is the only place in the state of Oregon where groups can view full resolution, 50-million-pixel images. It allows researchers to gain new insights into huge datasets, build 3D simulations and explore vistas ranging from nanoparticles to vast expanses of outer space.
Strategically-designed systems also allow relatively non-expert users to display their data without relying on dedicated staff, while enabling specific operator-controlled visualization research. Study areas feature rolling white boards to promote collaboration and interaction. The building also has a courtyard, and the commons area boasts the whimsically named coffee shop, “Elements Ca-Fé.”
“This new hub for the sciences is a key part of our master plan to advance our collaborative research and teaching. It provides space for the deep learning and bold thinking that Allan championed in order to transform lives and improve the world.” — University of Oregon Provost and Senior Vice President Scott Coltrane