Above: Rendering of the Webster Library’s main staircase, © Menkès Shooner Dagenais Letourneux Architectes

Phase 3 of the renovations is probably the largest of the four phases since it will encompass all of LB2, including the entrance, the circulation and reference desks, and the main staircase (as per the plan below). Please note that the work will start in early March 2016 on LB2 Bishop side, and in May 2016 on LB2 Mackay side. The targeted completion date is January 31, 2017.

For this reason, users and staff will have to temporarily use the emergency staircase (highlighted in yellow in the plan below) while work is underway on the main staircase. Services for users will be temporarily relocated to
LB3 Mackay/de Maisonneuve St. W. side near the Curriculum and Media Kits Collections and will be ready for May 2016.

LB3 Bishop

Plan for temporary reference, circulation and course reserve areas on LB3 Mackay/de Maisonneuve St. W. side.

The process of putting all the various components together in a coherent fashion proved to be quite an interesting puzzle to solve and required several iterations.

One of the challenges the Webster Library staff regularly face includes managing the traffic flow in and out of the Library.  We all know that the staircase area and lobby can be quite noisy. Users do not always realize where the Library starts!  The emergency staircase (shown in yellow above) with its enclosed passageway and signage will help inform users that the Library “starts here”!

When the new staircase reopens, music and audio books will fill the space with sound to create a transitional environment and encourage silence from users.  The staircase’s function will be both utilitarian and experiential!