With a small aging library that did not meet today’s needs with respect to space utilization, technology or accessibility, the University determined it was time to build a new academic anchor. University of Southern Indiana selected Hafer, along with Woollen Molzan & Partners, to design the new David L. Rice Library.
The new facility is a focal point for the campus both academically and physically. The library sits at the highest elevation of the quadrangle providing striking views of the surrounding buildings. The new four-story library is now one of the largest buildings on campus. It includes checkout and reserves, periodicals reading room and serials, computer labs, copying and self-checkout, general collection, and administrative and technical services offices. There is a Grand Reading Room on the second floor and the Kleymeyer Reading Room and Hall of Presidents on the fourth floor. Each of these rooms are designated as quiet study areas and have grand views of the campus quadrangle. The University also expressed a desire to have collaborative and interactive learning spaces. Throughout the library, there are quiet alcoves, media hubs for group studies, individual group study rooms, and group study rooms that accommodate groups of 2 to 12. On the main level there is a Starbuck’s which has quickly become a favorite hangout among students.