Commons Update

Posted on

Commons17Oct20121Computers and printers are now available in Commons North, which reopened earlier this week. Service points are not in their final configuration, but staff are present to direct students to needed services.

The study area outside Starbucks’ new, west-facing entrance has reopened with café seating and comfortable, curved couches.

More improvements will be evident soon.

Commons in Hodges Library Making Real Progress

Posted on

A large portion of the Commons in the Hodges Library should reopen in mid-October. Both Commons North and Commons South are nearing completion. New glass-enclosed group study rooms that admit ample natural light have been built around the perimeters. Service desks, computer tables, and booth-style seating are already in place. Library and OIT staff will begin installing computers and printers later this week.

The Commons has been undergoing renovations since early summer. Renovating an entire floor of the Hodges Library has entailed a complex choreography of temporary relocations of services and staff offices. Library staff recently reoccupied the updated Circulation/Media/Reserve service desk and office area just inside the Melrose Place entrance, freeing up space outside Starbucks’ new west-facing entrance for the upcoming installation of expanded café seating.

When students return from Fall Break, they should see real progress. Some exciting improvements are already apparent. Entrances to Commons North and Commons South have been widened, and a series of service desks are clearly visible across the entire expanse, north to south, of the second floor of Hodges. One need only peek over the construction barrier into Commons North to see the zig-zag computer tables and a serpentine arrangement of easy chairs. Commons South boasts new media:scape™ furniture that will allow students to walk up, plug in their own laptops, and confer on group projects.

The centralization of service desks means that students will be able to check out all equipment — laptops, scanners, video cameras, headphones, voice recorders and more — from one convenient location in Commons South. The Studio, now centrally located in Commons South, will offer more recording and video studios. Commons North will provide dedicated spaces for the Student Success Center, the Writing Center, Stat Lab, and the Math Tutorial Center.

It won’t be long now!

Commons Update: New Circulation Desk Opens

Posted on

CircSerpentineWe’re making real progress on the Commons! Renovations are underway in all quadrants of the Hodges Library second floor, but one quadrant is all but completed. Library staff have reoccupied the updated Circulation/Media/Reserve service desk and offices in the northwest corner. Book and equipment checkout have resumed at that location.

We don’t know how they did it, but the architects have made the square-footage of the Circulation area seem twice as spacious. Thank you, McCarty Holsaple McCarty!

Commons South is still on-target to reopen around mid-October. And it appears that Commons North will open around the same date. There is visible progress: if you peek over the construction barrier into Commons North, you can see the zig-zag computer tables and a serpentine arrangement of easy chairs.

We appreciate your patience and hope that — along with us — you are eagerly anticipating the unveiling of a new and better Commons.

Continuing updates:

Posted on

Circulation Office Area: 

Staff will begin moving back into offices next week (week of September 10).  Date for resuming service at the front desk has yet to be determined however. 


Melrose entrance/Mary Greer Room

Work will begin once Circulation has move out.


Commons North:

Getting close.  Furniture, including services desks, scheduled for installation to begin on September 14th. That process could take a week or so to complete. 


Study Lounge behind Starbucks:

The area will close and work will begin after Commons North re-opens.  


Commons South :

Goal for furniture installation is still September 24th.  Staff office areas are the first priority. 


First Floor: 

Move-in date is still holding at September 24th.


Current DMS and future Scholars Commons area:

Construction is set for October 1.

Hodges Library Commons to Open at the End of the Month

Posted on

Students will have more group study spaces, improved video and sound editing rooms, expanded academic support, and additional access to Starbucks when the Hodges Library Commons reopens at the end of this month.

The Commons, which encompasses the second floor of the library, has been under renovation since the summer.

The updated space will feature enclosed group study rooms. Some of the rooms will have interactive smart boards.

More group study spaces “is one of the enhancements students asked for,” said Rita Smith, the libraries’ executive associate dean.

Mediascape furniture—U-shaped tables with monitors that will allow students to connect their computers into the table and work together on a project at the same time—will be available throughout the Commons.

The Commons will feature a larger zone that is dedicated to tutoring and academic support. It will include the Student Success Center, the Writing Lab, and the Stat Lab.

A second door will also be added to Starbucks, a popular destination for many students.

To reduce inconvenience to students, library staff wearing “Ask Me” buttons have been greeting library users at the second floor Melrose entrance where most people enter the Commons.

There also has been plenty of signage to direct patrons to relocated library services.

“We realize it’s stressful for the students,” Smith said. “We’ve been sensitive to the fact that it can impact their work and we don’t want that to happen.”

Commons Renovations Still Underway

Posted on

MainStreet3If you have visited the Hodges Library lately, it will come as no surprise that the much-anticipated renovations to the Commons will not be completed by the beginning of the fall semester.

But we promise it will be worth the wait! The pay-off for some temporary inconvenience will be more group study spaces, more natural light, and exciting new media:scape furniture to facilitate collaborative projects. Services will be better organized, grouping academic consulting in one area and all equipment checkout at a single service point.

In the meantime, Commons services will be available at these temporary locations:

SERVICES LOCATIONS Beginning of Fall 2012
Circulation/Media/Reserve 2nd floor, Melrose entrance
Digital Media Service (DMS) 2nd floor, Rm. 209
Instructional Support (formerly ITC) 1st floor, Rm. 135H
Laptop and Equipment Checkout 2nd floor, Melrose entrance
OIT HelpDesk & Computer Support 2nd floor, Rm. 251
OIT Lab Services 1st floor, Reference Rm. 135
Research Assistance 1st floor, Reference Rm. 135
Starbucks 2nd floor, Main Street
START Program 1st floor, Rm. 135H
Stat Lab No service point until September
Student Success Center Greeve Hall, Rm. 324
The Studio 2nd floor, Rm. 211
UT Bookstore 2nd floor, Main Street
Writing Center 1st floor, Rm. 135G


TECHNOLOGY LOCATIONS Beginning of Fall 2012
Adjustable Height Workstation 1st floor, Reference Rm. 135
Color Printing
1st floor, Reference Rm. 135
2nd floor, Studio/Rm. 211
Copier (VolCard) 1st floor, Reference Rm. 135
Copier (CopyCard) 1st floor, Special Collections Rm. 121
DART Machine 1st floors, Reference Rm. 135
Print Express 1st floor, Reference Rm. 135
Sorensen VideoPhone 2nd floor, Studio/Rm. 211
Wireless Printing Stations
1st floor, Reference Rm. 135
Floors 3-6, across from elevators

We apologize for the inconvenience, noise, and dust. Please continue to visit the Commons on the 2nd floor of Hodges Library for your research and technology needs. The Commons is open every day. And, Sunday through Friday, we're open round-the-clock!

Commons Progress Update from Rita Smith

Posted on

If you have walked around the 2nd floor lately, it will probably be no surprise that the renovations will not be completed by the beginning of fall semester or even by the September 3rd date that was in the contract. Commons South and North and Room 245 areas will remain closed. 

 It is a complex project and delays do happen when dealing with infrastructure like lights, ceiling, electrical and networking issues. But I know it is going to be worth waiting for. Today at the construction progress meeting I came away with some estimates on when various areas may be ready.  These are estimates and can change quickly if something doesn’t work out the way it has been planned or plans have to be changed as the construction progresses.  

 We are expecting that the new Circulation front service desk area and back staff office area could be ready to move into — that is furniture installed and staff moved back in— by the last week of August.  That is pretty good news.

 Commons North and the first floor areas in Room 170 and 171 could be ready for occupancy by mid-September.  

 Commons South including room 245 most likely will be ready for occupancy by early October.   

 In the meantime we are preparing to offer library and OIT services normally located in the Commons and room 245 in other locations.  Library and OIT service managers met last week to work on those plans.  Circulation services, the Studio, and the OIT Help Desk will remain in their current temporary locations until they can move into their new spaces.  Most computer access will be provided in the first floor reference room and we do have 75 laptops for check out. Staff whose offices are not completed will remain in faculty studies throughout the building.   More specific information will be communicated next week when we work out all the details. 

 Thank you for your continued patience during the project.  And please let me know if you have questions. 

Where did everything go?

Posted on

Wonder where everything has been shuffled during the summer transition? See below:

Summer Commons Service Locations

Questions? Call 946-2100


Circulation / Media / Reserve 2nd floor, Melrose Entrance
Computer Support (OIT) 2nd floor, Room 251
Copier (AllStar) 1st floor, Reference Room
Copier (Copycard) 1st floor, Special Collections
DART Machine 1st floor, Reference Room
DMS (Digital Media Services) 2nd floor, Same Location
HelpDesk (OIT) 2nd floor, Room 251
ITC (Blackboard) 108 Hoskins
Lab Services (OIT) 1st floor, Reference Room
Laptop Checkout 2nd floor, Circulation Desk
Print Express Stations 1st floor, Reference Room
Research Assistance 1st floor, Reference Room
Scan to Print Workstation 1st floor, Reference Room
Sorensen VideoPhone 2nd floor, Studio Room 211
Starbucks 2nd floor, Same Location
START No Summer Service Point
Stat Lab No Summer Service Point
Student Success Center 812 Volunteer Blvd
Studio 2nd floor, Room 211
UT Bookstore 2nd floor, Same Location
VHS Viewing Cart for Checkout 2nd floor, Circulation Desk
Writing Center 1st floor, Rooms 135G-H


  • There are now MAC computers on 1st floor
  • The entire library is open until 10pm on Fridays and Saturdays to accommodate students using the computer lab
  • There are no wireless print release stations in the library this summer. Students needing to print wirelessly may do so at: 113 Presidential Court; 209 Perkins Hall; Room 315 University Center