The 48,000 sf Foothill College Library is central to the original campus designed by Ernest Kump in 1960. The building had since undergone minor improvements and a 10,300 sf addition in 1991. Ratcliff was engaged at the programming phase to work with administration, faculty, staff and students to develop a vision for the future of the library as a modern learning resource center. Through a series of user interviews and workshops, we developed a comprehensive project program and tested various planning diagrams to confirm function, adjacencies, and flow. The primary driver for this renovation was to reconceive the library for the next generation of students, digital natives with multiple modes of studying, researching and learning. The 1960’s building and to a lesser extent the 1991 addition required extensive infrastructure upgrades to support new technology and create diverse student learning spaces. Moreover, this project offered an opportunity to create a new “campus living room,” a renewed campus nexus that students can claim as their own.
In addition to a robust programming effort, Ratcliff and its consultants completed a building evaluation and developed a comprehensive approach to systems upgrades. The programming document, approved by all project constituents, served as the blueprint to guide all phases of project documentation.
Because this is the main library for the campus, the renovation required a phased approach with the 1960 building renovation in Phase I, while the 1991 building served as a temporary library, and the renovation of the latter in Phase II. Phase I involved whole systems upgrades for electrical, mechanical and telecom and deferred maintenance upgrades such as a total roof replacement. Phase I also included a new centralized main entry, new public information desks, reconfigured book stacks, new group study rooms, an information commons and a new quiet study room in the existing mezzanine level. Phase I reopened in January of 2016. With Phase II, the renovated 1991 addition houses the new Teaching and Learning Center, with expanded computer labs, a large learning center study area and increased group study rooms. The internal courtyard was reconfigured to provide greater connectivity between the original library and the addition