Library Building Projects: Learn from CALL!

Thanks to the Building Forward state grant funds administered by the California State Library, many public libraries around the state are planning or in the middle of infrastructure projects. Whether your library is addressing deferred maintenance needs or constructing a new building, professional guidance can make the process smoother.

The American Library Association conference in June featured several sessions on building projects, and CALL is happy to bring two of these events to California audiences: The Top 5 Mistakes Renovating Your Library, a one-hour webinar on Tuesday, August 1, and Build Better: Effective Library Project Management, a one-hour webinar on Wednesday, August 16.  Plus there’s a six-week course on Planning and Management of Library Buildings from ALA, starting August 14.

If you want to learn more than just these just-in-time offerings, don’t forget the recordings from Carlos Baffigo’s Building Basics and Building Basics Continued series, available 24/7 on CALL Academy.

The Top 5 Mistakes webinar from ALA focuses on renewing existing library structures. A renovation is a golden opportunity to renew your space for a new generation of patrons. But not every library has staff with current experience renovating, so every year, libraries make the same 5 mistakes when renovating. Join NYU professor and author of Library Space Planning: A PLA Guide David Vinjamuri, library architect Joe Huberty of Engberg Anderson and community librarian Julie Retherford (who just finished a two-year pandemic renovation) to learn their secrets for a successful renovation and how you can avoid the most common pitfalls.

At the end of this webinar, you will be able to:

  • Create a renovation plan that avoids the most common mistakes libraries make when renovating;
  • Understand the process to uncover hidden community needs;
  • Measure the circulation efficiency of collection items and identify dead zones;
  • Spot red flags when hiring a design team; and
  • Assemble a cross-functional team that will preserve the original vision for the renovation through completion.

The Library Project Management webinar from ALA provides an overview that applies to all types of library improvements to help you achieve your system’s objectives. Learn strategies for effectively communicating your project goals to a design and construction team and leave with the tools necessary to prepare a detailed needs assessment and project scope. Charleston County Public Library’s Project Manager Toni Lombardozzi, who has a background in architecture and construction project management, is currently overseeing a $108.5 million capital improvement project that includes small renovations to larger-scale new construction. Lombardozzi has spent the last six years on the project and will share insights into the cross-disciplinary experience of working closely with both library staff and design and construction teams and provide tips and tools on how to make this type of communication effective. This presentation is geared towards anyone with an upcoming improvement project. However, the project management strategies presented can be applied to a wide range of ventures not limited to construction. If you have worked on design/construction enterprises before, you’ll find innovative ideas for successful project implementation, and if you are new to this practice, you’ll learn the groundwork for efficiently advancing projects.

By the end of this webinar, attendees will be able to:

  • Successfully prepare a viable needs assessment and develop a detailed project scope;
  • Given a capital improvements project, attendees will be able to accurately translate project goals and objectives to consultants, design and construction teams;
  • Will have the tools to create practical strategies for successful project implementation within their organization; and
  • Given a capital improvements project, attendees will be able to effectively identify project deliverables throughout progressive project stages.

Register now for these great webinars, selected to help California library staff reach their goals!

If you have more time to devote, consider enrolling in Planning and Management of Library Buildings, which runs August 14 to September 25. (Please remember that you can only enroll in one CALL-sponsored course at a time, and when you register for a long-form course, your space is reserved and must be cancelled if you cannot attend.)

This course, led by instructor Kimberly Bolan, will provide learners with an understanding of the key elements, best practices, methodologies, and overall processes for successfully planning, designing, constructing, maintaining, and evaluating library buildings. The overarching goal of the course is to prepare participants to lead any type of facilities projects with the knowledge of how to plan and build functional, adaptable, forward-thinking, community-centric libraries and spaces.

You’ll learn to:

  • List building maintenance and operation procedures for effective budgeting and selection of maintenance programs and staff.
  • Describe short- and long-range capital improvement and facility development plans.
  • List procedures in employing architectural, engineering and consultant assistance in building maintenance and development programs.
  • Describe key components and required information in developing building programs.
  • Describe the planning and construction processes for renovated or new facilities.
  • Describe the roles of other governmental entities in developing building programs and renovation/new facilities plans.
  • List life and safety issues in building operation and planning.
  • List technology planning needs and building requirements.
  • Describe post-occupancy evaluation procedures.
  • Understand issues related to emergency, disaster, and other unexpected situations within the building.