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The Daily Tar Heel

Library Gutting Project Proceeds As Scheduled

A chain-link fence was erected around the building a week ago to contain the construction project -- the first hint to passers-by that the renovation had begun.

But officials for the project say the fence might be the only visual clue as to what is happening inside the building for the duration of the renovation process.

"Viewing the library from the outside, you won't really know anything is going on," said Robert Hall, project manager of Clancy & Theys Construction Co. "We'll be gutting the building from the inside."

Clancy & Theys Construction Co. is the Raleigh-based contracting firm hired to work on the project.

Hall said the firm has already begun the demolition process.

The firm is contracted to finish the building in April 2002. David Taylor, the undergraduate librarian, said the entire project is on schedule for an estimated reopening some time after next April.

The process of hiring a contractor began in January when the lowest bid for the project was accepted.

After the firm was chosen, Gordon Rutherford, the director of facilities planning, said paperwork concerning logistical details held up the project slightly.

"It usually takes a month and half to two months from the time the bid is accepted," Rutherford said.

He said the entire process typically takes several months, adding that the library renovations were following a common time frame.

While the construction is occurring, Hall said the University has emphasized the necessity of noise control.

"We'll monitor noise levels during classes, certain athletic events and graduation," Hall said.

Besides the possibility that the construction could create noise level obstacles for students, the movement of materials from the Undergrad has posed other problems for students as well.

Students now use a paging system in which a member of the library staff retrieves the book from Wilson Library. The books previously housed in the Undergrad had to be shifted to Wilson Library so they would be available the first day of spring semester classes. "Obviously, the use of the books has gone down because in the Undergraduate Library (students) could retrieve the books themselves," Taylor said.

"But the number of books being paged is higher than what the Davis (Library) staff expected."

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