Frequently asked questions about the renovation

When can I study in the new building?

The library is open! As of January, 2024, we welcome students, faculty, and members of the community to visit, study, and enjoy.

How does the re-opening affect Library services in fall 2023 and spring 2024?

We are working hard to minimize service impacts during this time of transition. That said, some service changes will occur temporarily, primarily in the form of short-term delays as staff and materials are relocated.

Bookmark the status dashboard to see any current impacts, and feel free to contact Ask a Librarian or your subject liaison if you have specific concerns.

Can I take a tour before the building opens?

Tours have now paused to allow for the space to be finished, and we look forward to welcoming you in January. In the meantime, check out this video tour.


When are the books moving? Can I browse them right away?

During the renovation, high-use items have remained available for browsing in Clemons, and the full collection has been available on-demand from Ivy Stacks. 

The book move into the new building began in December 2023 and will continue through the first few months of 2024. Some collections will immediately be available for browsing when the space opens, but the move will still be in progress when the building opens in January. Any items that are mid-move will be marked as available “by request” in Virgo, and can be requested for LEO delivery.

The book move into the new library should complete by April, and book moves on the first floor of Clemons, re-populating with materials from Ivy Stacks, will continue through the end of spring semester. 

What is the project's timeline?

Governor Ralph Northam and the General Assembly approved the appropriation to move this capital project to the construction phase in April 2019. In June 2019, Skanska was awarded the construction management contract for the project. Skanska is now working with HBRA and UVA to execute the project. 

The main library, Alderman, closed for renovation in March 2020. The 2019-20 academic year was a transitional period where preparations were made to minimize the duration of the closure.

The new building will open in January, 2024, and a celebratory grand opening event will be held in April, 2024. 

What has the Library done to mitigate the impact of the renovation?

Prior to embarking on the renovation, the Library doubled the capacity of Ivy Stacks, our off-site shelving facility, to allow for preservation-quality storage and quick retrieval of Library materials. Additionally, high-density shelving was added to the first floor of Clemons Library to house a significant browsing collection of high-demand items which would normally be found in Alderman.

Additionally, we expanded scanning and LEO services to graduate students, and are collaborating across the University to identify pain points and alleviate frustration whenever possible. 

Where can I return my books? 

Books can be returned to any Library location. The book drop in the Central Grounds Parking Garage closed in December 2023, but a drive-up book drop will remain at Ivy Stacks (2450 Old Ivy Road). 

Recent headlines

2 months ago
All are welcome to join on April 4 for a grand opening celebration of The Edgar Shannon Library! An open house will take place from noon to 4 p.m., and remarks and a reception will follow. Activities will include interactive demonstrations, special displays of Library collections, virtual reality, and more!
2 months ago
In advance of our grand opening celebration on April 4, take a look at this photo essay of The Edgar Shannon Library, with 20+ images taken by Tom Daly.
3 months ago
In advance of the grand opening celebration of The Edgar Shannon Library on April 4, we’re taking a deep dive into historical photos of the building and comparing them with the renovated space today.

What’s happening now?

In fall 2023, the move-in process begins.

In spring 2024, the space opens to the public and move-in continues, with the book move taking place through spring semester.

These transitions will affect Library services from time to time; you can read more about any current impacts on the Library’s status dashboard.