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J une 18, 2014

Dean David Cronrath

School of Architecture, Planning, & Preservation
University of Maryland
1200 Architecture Building
College Park, MD 20742-1411

Dear Dean Cronrath,

Since 2011 library staff have been engaged in conversations and planning to alter the
Architecture Library to reflect both changes in use and financial realities. Architecture library
staff, you and others in the School have been updated as plans were developed. Our creative use
of kiosks to directly support the studios is one result of our collaborative effort to establish a new
service model. Similar conversations have been going on across campus as the library has
searched to bolster services and reduce costs. Also, similar transformations are happening at
other branch libraries.

The campus budget climate and prescribed base cuts this coming fiscal year and the two
following are causing the Libraries to take steps more quickly than anticipated to make
reductions and to consolidate and eliminate aspects of our operations.

A goal for the Architecture Library has been to develop a 21
century model that depends upon
the delivery of as many resources as possible to the desktop, thus removing the onus of place
dictating work. We are making good progress in providing digital resources to support the work
of your faculty and students.

As the use of paper resources continues to decline, it is important that we make sure the
necessary print titles are accessible and in proper context. For that reason, the ultimate
integration of the Architecture Library collections into McKeldin Library is a goal.

I will take the liberty of using a quote that you introduced me to that I think is most appropriate:

It came to pass, therefore, that a single cathedral or monastery often had as many as half a
dozen distinct collections, located at various points in church and cloisters, each intended for a
special use; and besides this, there were also, here and there in the cloisters, small reading-desk
with one or two books on each for general reading. The whole institution was thus in some sort a

library, and to think of the ecclesiastical library as a single collection in a single place is to miss
one of its most characteristic features (Richardson 1905).

Incorporating the architecture materials into McKeldin will place them in the context of art,
history and other complementary collections, as well as architecture titles already in McKeldin
and other locations. This will add about a third more volumes to the present architecture
collections. During the process to integrate the collections, we will depend upon InterLibrary
Loan to provide titles as needed. Our membership in the CIC now permits all your faculty and
students to use UBorrow 90 million items that can be selected and sent directly to your faculty
and students from our CIC peer partners. This will provide quick delivery and access to books.
We also will continue to provide delivery of books from McKeldin and the Libraries directly to

McKeldin Library, which fortunately is close by, provides excellent accessibility with 24 hour
service five days a week for most of the year and generous week-end hours. It also has the
emerging Research Commons, the Terrapin Learning Commons, Makerspace, rich technology,
and experts available. It is a center of service and community that will serve your faculty and
students in ways an isolated branch library no longer can do.

Another goal is to incorporate the new liaison librarian model into your school. Cindy Frank is
taking on those new roles, including instruction, guidance with the kiosk program and other
reserve materials, and we will work with her to provide the support and mentorship she needs
to succeed. She is incredibly capable and is most enthusiastic, so we are well on our way to

A final purpose in our collaboration will be the possible transformation of the space, now
occupied by collections decreasingly used, to space that will accommodate collaboration, study
and community-building within the School. The use of that space can and should serve the
changing needs of your faculty and students and should be under your control when the library
completes its transition to the new model.

Because we need to make some immediate, cost-saving changes in the Architecture Library, we
are taking the following actions by the early fall:
Remove the periodicals and folios from the damaged shelves and shift as many as
possible to the mezzanine floor so that access to the core periodicals remains available
Identify reserve/kiosk book titles to ensure they are available for use during the next
academic year

Pack up remaining books for storage while integrating them into the McKeldin Library
stacks over the next months. UBorrow and other ILL methods plus direct office delivery
will provide books needed in this interim period
Work with you to determine use for the freed up stack space on the first floor

We will not be removing the folios and collections that are in the Special Collections Room so
that will remain available to your faculty and students. We will also maintain the periodicals to
the extent that space permits and make sure that current issues are freely available to all patrons
until they move to binding.

While I regret the speed with which this process now must proceed, I do believe that ultimately
we will realize the goals of our work. I want to assure you that we will make all our decisions
with the users in mind, consulting as much as is possible and feasible. As recent ratings reveal,
yours is a highly rated program that we are dedicated to support. This support includes sustaining
the architecture collection but also reshaping the concept of library to meet current and emerging
needs beyond the traditional idea of a library. In the new model, collections are in proper context
and within space that is accessible, technology rich, and staffed by experts.

Our Associate Deans for Public Services (Gary White) and Collections (Dan Mack) and I stand
ready to meet with your faculty in the fall if that seems desirable. Please contact me with any
questions. We will be communicating regularly during this process.


Patricia A. Steele
Dean of Libraries