New accommodations for Special Collections

Published on
June 19, 2007

The Special Collections in the New Building

The Library's Special Collections are housed in one of the most architectonically beautiful places of the Forum. The round, transparent ceiling of the reading room functions as the underside of the spherical void around which the library is housed. Through the ceiling one can see glass vitrines in which changing exhibitions will be held and a large round table at which the collection can be studied.

The round forms also come back in the drum under the sphere on the ground floor and on the first floor with the repository for the Special Collections. Both these spaces and the vitrines as well as the reading room have an extensive air conditioning and ventilation system. These facilities shall take care that the temperature and the relative humidity remain at a constant and stable level that is optimal for the collection on paper. For extra sensitive material, there is also a separate cool store.

The spaces are moreover much larger than those in the Jan Kopshuis because a number of collections have been added to the main collection such as the old book collection from 1850 to ca.1900 (25,000 titles) and the map collections from the Alterra/Library "De Haaff". For these collections and the map collections of Wageningen University, a reading room for cartographic documents has been created: The Special Collections Reading Room. Starting 10 September, the reading room will be open whole days from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm. Until this change takes effect, the old opening times remain enforce: 9:00 am-12:30 pm.

(Newsletter 4-2007)