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Bata: Library of the Future

Person walking through new library

Bata: Library of the Future

Information for Community Members

The Bata Library revitalization is an exciting project that will result in a spectacular modernized library in May 2018. Whether you’re a library user or community member just curious about the transformation, we encourage you to learn more about and stay up-to-date on our library renewal and what it means for our community.

​Information on this page will be updated and added as further details become available. Please check back for updates.

Posted: February 7, 2017; updated September 1, 2017

I heard the Bata Library is being renovated. What is happening?

Trent University’s iconic Bata Library is set to undergo an amazing revitalization and transformation. Starting this spring, and fueled by recent funding, the Library will undergo an $18 million transformation into a library of the future – and home to the new Bata Research and Innovation Cluster. The transformation will be carried out in a way that maintains and enhances a historically-significant building designed by one of Canada’s most renowned architects, Ron Thom. 

Why is this project important for the University?

This exciting project will transition the Bata Library into one of the most recently transformed university libraries available. With a more contemporary view of university libraries today, the newly transformed Bata Library with the Bata Research and Innovation Cluster will provide members of the Peterborough and Trent communities with access to all of the print and digital collections needed within a library space better configured to meet our community’s need to work collaboratively and independently in a modern, aesthetically-pleasing, environmentally-friendly facility.

When the renovations are complete, what will the new library look like?

Trent’s Bata Library is considered an architectural gem in our community. This transformation will only serve to enhance that reputation and ensure Peterborough, and Trent, remains a destination for knowledge and innovation. In the newly renovated space, visitors will find:

  • Greatly enhanced collaborative working space for students and visitors, along with designated areas for various levels of contemplative and individual study
  • An entrepreneurship and social innovation centre
  • Various locations for the newly curated book and non-print collections
  • Three research centres: Trent Centre for Aging and Society; Indigenous Environmental Studies Research Centre; Canadian Environmental Modelling Centre
  • Two visualization labs
  • Educational design research studio
  • A presentation practice room
  • A  wide selection of interactive student spaces (group and individual)
  • Design elements to promote environmental sustainability, including a green wall

Does the library need to be closed for the renovation?

The library building will be closed, but library collections and services will continue to be available throughout the project through alternate processes and locations. In order to repurpose, refresh and modernize all public areas of the Bata Library, including a complete overhaul of environmental, heating and electrical systems, and to meet the federal government’s timelines for funding the project, the building will be closed from May 1, 2017 to May 1, 2018.

What kind of print collection will be available in the new library next year?

The integration of a carefully curated collection of Bata Library’s current print holdings will be a key feature of the newly transformed Bata Library. About 50% of the Bata Library’s current print holdings will return when the building reopens. Priority will be given to materials that: respond to current and identified future needs for teaching, learning and research; historically important and unique collections; materials where dependable alternate formats (e.g. digital or microform) are not available; items which are only available at Trent; and more.

The revitalization of the library will ensure Trent’s digital and physical collections are preserved, while improving access to the world’s knowledge, and ensuring our library services respond to the rapidly changing needs of students, faculty and our community.

What happens to the rest of the books and materials that are not moved back into the library when it reopens?

An evaluation of the Bata Library’s print and other non-digital collections is currently underway. Over the next 18 to 24 months, materials that will be removed from the library will be made available to the broader community and Trent community members, similar to the current first floor “free book” area. The library will also work with external firms, such as Better World Books, which will take materials and make them available to libraries around the world that can use them. Some pieces, like bound print journals (of which 90% or more are now available digitally), that are not redistributed, will be recycled.

I conduct research at Trent, use the Trent Archives, and/or check out books from the Bata Library. How will I get my books and other research materials during the reconstruction?

All current community cardholders, as well as students, faculty and staff will continue to have access to books and collections and research support services throughout the duration of the renovation process.

The library’s specialized collections, such as the archives, maps, and microforms, along with the equipment and space needed to consult them, will be temporarily moved to an off-campus, downtown location at the former Shoppers Drug Mart (225 Charlotte Street), accessible by public transportation.

The circulating collections will be placed in a second off-campus location (2109 Whittington Drive). This location will not be open to the public, but students, faculty and staff will be able to request items from the library collection through TOPCAT, the library catalogue. The requested items will be delivered to a temporary on-campus service point (SC 103) for pick up.

On the Symons Campus, an on-campus service point in the new Student Centre will be open to support the needs of faculty and students with service hours similar to our current library service hours. Library materials ordered from the off-campus locations during the reconstruction will be transported to and from this service point.

All current library services (e.g. reserves, book loans, interlibrary loans, research and instructional support, data and GIS support) will continue to be available. All online digital resources and collections will continue to be available during the temporary relocation of library services, as will the collections and services of the Archives and the Maps, Data and Government Information Centre (MaDGIC).

How long will it take for me to get the books and resources I request through the on-campus service point?

There will be regularly-scheduled deliveries of materials to and from the temporary off-campus locations to the on-campus service point. Community cardholders and other library users will receive their requests for library material within 24 hours of making a request. Additional time may be required for requests made over weekend hours.

A lot of students use the library for quiet study and/or to work in groups. Where these students go when the library is closed?

Easing the transition during reconstruction, the new Student Centre will be able to accommodate members of the Trent community looking for places to meet, study and collaborate on campus. The University has also relocated all of the library’s 950 study seats to repurposed locations across campus and added an additional 75 study seats available for use when classes begin.The 1,025 relocated study seats will match the hours previously held by Bata Library, including extended hours during exams, and can be easily located using the available interactive map. The majority of these spaces will be accessible and include quiet, group and computer study space. In fact, the same number of computers that were available in the library have been relocated across campus and even more printing stations have been added to ensure simple access to computers and printing throughout the year.

How much will this project cost and how is the University paying for it?

The total cost of the Bata Library revitalization project is approximately $18 million. The project is being funded and supported through: $7 million in funding from the federal government’s Strategic Investment Fund; $1.1 million in funding from the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development; and $3.9 million in University contributions, including a $1 million donation already received and a $1 million fundraising campaign that is now getting underway. See below for more information on how you can get involved and support this excisting project.  The remainder of the funds will be financed through Trent University.

I am excited about this project and would like to make a donation to support the Bata Library transformation. What’s the best way to make a gift?

The multi-million library renewal project is a key initiative in Trent University’s $50 Million Campaign: Unleash the Potential. The realization of this project will depend on the generosity and support of our alumni and donors. All gifts in support of the library project are most welcome. As a community user of the Bata Library, you can make a one-time gift by filling in the form on our Give Now website, or stretch your support even further through a monthly gift or pledge.

Can I provide input/feedback on this project?

Definitely! We want to hear from you. Community members can directly contact the library through various social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and even by email. If you have any specific questions about the renovation process, floor plans or would like to share an idea or suggestion, please email the University Librarian, Robert Clarke at libraryadministration@trentu.ca.