By Brook Corwin and Tyler Maland
A "We're Moving" banner hanging above the Undergraduate Library is reminding many students that they will soon be in search of alternative locations to hit the books.
In anticipation of the upcoming renovation of the Undergrad, which closes its doors Dec. 19, Davis Library will extend its hours and security, almost certainly creating larger crowds in the typically hushed environment.
And some students looking to avoid the inevitable crowds will soon join those who seek out UNC's lesser-known libraries and other atypical study spots.
"Davis doesn't have many tables, and all the study rooms are usually taken," said senior Spanish and international studies major Elizabeth Kissling as she studied in the Union Gallery. She said the lack of tables forces her to retreat to more isolated locations in Davis Library. "You have to go up to the seventh or eighth floor, and it weirds me out."
Kissling said she also tends to her studies at the James M. Johnston Center for Undergraduate Excellence, which features lavish furniture underneath crystal chandeliers. Other students also praised the center for its elegant, yet cozy, atmosphere.
"It is more comfortable, and you can spread out and relax," said freshman Jena Wittkamp. "It's more like your living room than a library."
The Johnston Center also offers students the freedom to eat and drink while studying with the convenience of a coffee shop located inside its doors.
Students who prefer the more traditional environment can study underneath the marble columns of Wilson Library. Clayton said the silence of the study area is more appealing than the crowds of Davis Library. "With the Undergrad closing, I figure everyone will be headed to Davis, and I really like Wilson's quiet and more intimate atmosphere."
The Johnston Center and Wilson Library also have noticeable security measures, with several visible cameras monitoring student activity.
Although much smaller than Wilson Library, departmental libraries, which include the Sloane Art Library, Kenan Chemistry Library and Park Library in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, offer the convenience of department-specific resources.
"Venable is my home," said chemistry major Derek Thornton, as he opened his backpack at the Kenan Chemistry Library. "I like the locality of this library more than anything. It's so close to all my classrooms and professors."
But some students choose to avoid campus altogether during study time. Several students said they like to frequent coffee houses such as Caribou Coffee Co., which offers electrical outlets for laptop computers.
Kissling said that with alternatives like coffee houses, she will not miss the chatter of the Undergraduate Library. "The noise (at coffee shops) distracts me less because there's usually music playing, and that drowns out the noise," Kissling said. "Besides, Caribou is often quieter than the Undergrad."
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