University announces new library, study space

A new, improved and spacious library will be built in 2020 on California Baptist University’s main campus behind the Wallace Theatre.

Students said they are excited about the new building coming to campus because of the increase in space and study rooms that will be available.

Designers at Gensler Architecture Firm are giving a variety of designs from which students can choose, letting them voice  which design they feel would be the best.

On Jan. 24, in front of Wallace Theatre, designers asked students for their input from different design choices and document feedback from them.

Christina McDonald, senior leadership studies and international business double major, said she believes the indoor outdoor option will be a great fit for students.

“I put outdoor-indoor for what would enhance the new library just because it gives you a option,” McDonald said.

She added that having a coffee shop would be convenient for her to both study and enjoy coffee and not have to go to two different locations.

“Usually, I’m at a coffee shop when I sit down and study. It will be a lot easier if we had a place on campus to do that so I don’t have to leave,” McDonald said. “(A coffee shop in the study area) is just easier and will create a better atmosphere on campus.”

Gensler designers securing a final design proposal by October.

The designers said they will be referring back to student opinions throughout the design process.

Heidi Hampton, project architect for the new CBU building, said the goal is to make the library fit for different students attending CBU. 

“We understand there is a big need for the student study spaces and the design team is working hard to make a library fit for all students’ needs,” Hampton said. “We are really trying to understand all the different types of students that are coming here.”

Preston Magalhaes, senior cultural anthropology and global community science double major, said he believes all of the designs shown to students to choose from are great for the students.

“Everything looks amazing,” Magalhaes said. “Anything the students are deciding will be good.”

Maghalhaes said the existing library often can be too cluttered to study and for students to focus during the semester.

“During finals week, the library is not as quiet because there are so many people there,” Magalhaes said of the Annie Gabriel Library. “I would study more if there were more space in the new library and more spots
that were available to just be quiet.”

This project for CBU is important to both students and faculty.

Nathan Iverson, program director of the industrial-organizational psychology master program and assistant professor of psychology, said the top request from students is for more research space.

“If you don’t have the (research space) to offer, it makes things difficult from a faculty perspective to not be able to offer all those things (to our students),” Iverson said. 

Iverson also said he believes the new library will be a good space to foster positive staff and student interactions regarding class work or study questions.

“If students have a question like ‘hey remind me of what happened on Wednesday’ that would be a great oppotunity to have more natural faculty-student interaction,” Iverson said.

The student population had an important voice in the design of the new library as all input will be taken into consideration to create a useful space for all student types.

Students should look forward to more news about the project in coming months and will, no doubt, be excited to see their own ideas come to fruition.

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