At this web site you will find updates
of the construction of the Leatherby Libraries in
words and images. There will be a live web cam link,
some "fun facts", some FAQs
and a summary each week of the progress of our new
library. Please send us your comments and questions.
Dean of the Library
firstname.lastname@example.org + (714) 997 - 6664
Construction has begun. At the beginning
of the week, the building was empty, but still standing.
Fences and walls were constructed to isolate the construction
zone. The week began with a Demolition Party that
became an "Un-Demolition Party" in the truest
Lewis Carroll tradition. From the 4th floor Barbara
Bush Patio where we all gathered, we could see nothing
because demolition was beginning on the Argyros Forum
All of that changed over the course
of the week, as the gigantic wrecking machines methodically
took down the building. And by the end of day on Friday,
only the south portion of the first floor walls remained.
Schweitzer's last view
from Beckman Hall
Demolition & Salvage. The gigantic
red Penhall Excavators, under skilled operation, carefully
and methodically sorted the ductwork metal from its
insulation, and the concrete rubble from its re-bar,
so that each building material type could be dropped
into the appropriate salvage bins.
Excavator Sorts Building Material
from Beckman Hall
Site Preparation. This week the site
was cleared of any remaining materials that comprised
the Thurmond Clarke Memorial Library. Ground has been
leveled, the concrete walls of the basement removed,
and some excavation has begun.
from the ground
Excavation. Throughout this period,
the site has been prepared for construction. Then
the excavation began. First, all of the former basement
structure was removed. Now, the footprint for the
basement floor of the Leatherby Libraries is taking
shape. Concurrently with this is the excavation of
the basement of the Music Building extension, Oliphant
Hall. It is part of the same construction zone.
Assisting Chapman's Construction Management
Department with all the details associated with a
project of this magnitude is Abacus Consulting. Kurt
Reidl is our Abacus representative. He has been with
Chapman from the initiation of the project, even coordinating
the move, both of offices and library materials, to
the Interim Library in the Law School. Here he is
in his current office space in Wilkinson Hall.
Reidl in Wilkinson Hall
The basement footprint has been excavated,
the walls framed and poured, and the slab readied
to be poured early next week. Steel is scheduled to
arrive in October. The building will then begin to
The 260-foot tall crane arrived in October.
It brings in the steel, and delivers it to the ironworkers
who build the frame of the building. The crane has
a red light on its very top, and has become a landmark
of Chapman University's progress for neighbors in
the City of Orange. By the end of October, the perimeter
framing of the first floor of the library began to
moving an I - beam into place
from Beckman Hall
Concurrently with this work, the students
of Chapman University's art department began a class
in mural design. Under the direction of Adjunct Professor
Alvin Gregorio, 15 students developed a design for
murals on the east and west sides of the library construction
site. Here is a photo of the fence before mural construction.
The structural steel framing moved to
the upper floors during November.
Mechanical units were installed in the basement.
The framing for the concrete flooring was put in place
for each floor in turn.
the concrete flooring
A Library brick wall mockup has been
prepared to establish the benchmark for the quality
of the façade.
The east side mural has been completed.
The mural is entitled "Beyond Awake".
In the words of the student designers,
"this mural is a symbolic representation of the
transformation we are all making here in college at
Chapman University. From the uncertainty at the beginning
of our education to the metamorphosis of growth, change,
and knowledge, the journey is never easy. At the beginning,
it can feel like hell, which is represented on the
periphery of the mural. Moving inward and on with
the journey, the darkness is replaced by trees, which
are symbols of life, growth and wisdom. The destination,
the center, is a garden of bright flowers and the
light emanating from a deity-like form, surrounded
by an aura of illuminated color.
from Schweitzer's view
"The central theme tying the whole
mural together are the caterpillars, cocoons, and
butterflies. Each one represents one of us, and we
have all created them on our own and combined them
together, much like the conglomeration of individuals
we have all formed in this class. Not all of them
turn into butterflies, some are different characters
which have various personal meanings. They all are
on the road from the "hell land" to transform
along the way in the trees and reach the goal at the
" However what complicates the
ending is that the light and energy attracting the
various creatures is coming from a bug zapper. Other
obstacles are the men in suits wearing gas masks.
They have bug catching nets and are after the creatures.
Fire, craters, clouds of smoke, and monsters also
stand in the way of reaching the center.
"When the creatures reach the end,
the bug zapper, their fate is unknown. Will they move
on to the post-college life and be successful, or
will they be unable to overcome the final hurdle?
Every ending is a new beginning."
to my nightmare
The students have now turned their attention
to the west side murals. It is an ambitious artistic
project that they hope to complete by the end of the
The installation of the steel is just
about finished. The Rotunda has been delivered. It
arrived in pieces, and was formed on site.
The Rotunda will be the architectural
feature of the building. On the first floor, the Rotunda
will house an after-hours study commons with coffee
bar and vending area. There will also be a photocopy
room, restrooms, and two group study rooms. The Rotunda
will open onto the outdoor cyber courtyard and sculpture
garden that will feature wireless and wired data connections,
benches, and tables and chairs in a garden setting.
The second and third floors of the Rotunda will be
beautiful, open reading and study areas with lots
of natural lighting through the mostly glass walls
and skylight from the canopy rooftop.
The First Floor concrete slab was poured
this week. Another "deck", or floor, will
be poured about every two weeks.
The First Floor will feature major library
service centers: the reference and research service
desk and reference collection, the current periodicals
and newspapers collection and reading area, the electronic
information commons, a computer alcove, a reference
consultation room, the circulation and reserves counter,
the Interlibrary Loan offices, the library service
center for University College, and the donor alcove
to thank all the people who have made this building
possible with their generous gifts. Floor One also
houses the librarians and library staff who order,
process, catalog, preserve, and make available the
library's books and other materials.
Where did everything go?
Most of the furnishings were diverted to other uses
at Chapman University. All that remained in the
building before demolition was some of the older
book shelving. That shelving, the aluminum ducting
throughout the building, and the aluminum shed on
the roof were carefully isolated and recycled. The
rubble will be ground up for roadwork in the southland.
What are they doing with the
wooden walls around the site? Professor Richard
Turner, Co-director of the Guggenheim Galley and
Co-chair of the Art Department, will be using those
walls for his fall semester class on murals. Watch
for some pretty interesting and colorful results.
What are those I-beams doing
sticking out of the ground? Those were drilled
and placed to shore up the "driveways"
for the semi trucks and other large heavy equipment
that will take out rubble and bring in materials
for the new building.
How long will the construction
take? Matt Construction says 66 weeks. That
comes up to be around mid-September of 2004.
What are the white wood panels
around the perimeter of the construction site? Students in the Art Department will soon be painting
murals on those panels. This is an example of Chapman
University's commitment to development a relevant
curriculum by taking advantage of this opportunity.
What will go in the basement? The basement will house the 60-station open computer
lab, six computer classrooms, a computer service desk, the call
center, and offices for Information Systems and
Technology. In addition, the basement will house
the major equipment that service the building such
as mechanical, electrical, and plumbing.
Stay tuned for more updates.
Send us your questions and comments.