The new MU journalism library, to be located in the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute, will be more user-friendly and more technologically advanced than the current library, said Marsha Hoffman, senior associate at Shaughnessy Fickel and Scott Architects, the Kansas City firm designing the institute.
The institute, slated to open in the fall of 2007, is being funded by a $31 million gift from the Reynolds Foundation, given to the Missouri School of Journalism in February. It is the largest donation in MU history.
This week, journalism faculty and the architects discussed plans for the new library, including the size and nature of its collection, its technological facilities, its hours of operation and security.
“(We want to) make it a really friendly looking place where people can come and work and do research and all that,” said Brian Brooks, associate dean of journalism at MU. “To make it look as inviting as possible is very important.”
Dean Mills, dean of the journalism school, said he hopes the new library will help both students and citizens better understand the practice of journalism.
“It goes beyond simply serving journalists,” Mills said. “Citizens would also use the library to examine free-press issues. We want it to be very accessible.”
The library will occupy the ground and first floors of the Sociology Building, which will be renovated as part of the Reynolds Institute project. Hoffman said the total cost for the project will be $19.6 million and that construction documents for the library will be completed in June.