Theodore Sanford/Contributing Photographer The library will continue to undergo crane work in the coming weeks.

Over fall break, crane construction took place outside Glenn G. Bartle Library as a part of the ongoing third floor renovations.

In a statement released on behalf of the Binghamton University Libraries, Bryan Field, library communications officer, said that the purpose of the project — which took place from Oct. 19 to 23 — was to remove and replace old mechanical equipment and materials from the third floor of the library. Because the project required a crane, a portion of M lot was blocked off from pedestrian, car and bus use.

Karen Fennie, communications specialist for the Physical Facilities department, provided insight into the third floor construction project as a whole.

“There is a critical need for an extensive mechanical update as well as asbestos removal,” Fennie said. “The renovation project provides the ideal opportunity to redesign the floor to meet the current needs of our campus community. The goal of the third floor redesign is to transform the floor into an innovative and inviting space for study, teaching and research. The new space will include areas for quiet study, collaborative work, instruction, research and our unique collection.”

The overall goal of this project is to provide students with more support resources, according to the Libraries’ statement. When complete, the third floor will host a Digital Resource Center, as well as meeting rooms for collaboration and quiet study spaces.

Fennie explained Physical Facilities’ motivations in conducting construction involving crane work and roadblocks over fall break.

“The goal was to reduce the impact on campus,” Fennie said. “The work required road and pedestrian detours so we worked with the contractor to coordinate dates when there would be less vehicle and pedestrian traffic.”

Despite attempts to avoid significant disruption to students’ schedules, buses and cars were rerouted along a portion of West Drive, requiring people to find alternate routes of access to certain areas of campus.

Noah Zimmer, a senior majoring in geology, expressed some frustration around the road closures and communication issues surrounding the project.

“I understand the need to close down the road at certain times for safety, but the amount of time this road closure was in place seemed longer than necessary, in my opinion,” Zimmer said. “This, plus other experiences previously that day, solidified my feelings that construction workers seem to be operating in a world outside of students and staff. Of course we need to respect their space and safety, but they need to respect ours as well. I really do wish the best for all the workers, but there needs to be more engagement with the environment they’re building in.”

The project coordinators have taken several steps in an attempt to reduce the impact of the renovations on students. Materials normally located on the third floor have been distributed throughout the library, and a virtual Browse Shelf tool can be used to find them, according to library staff.

Olivia Saccamano, a senior majoring in biology, shared her own experiences with the roadblocks.

“I was not on campus for most of the break, actually, because I was with my parents,” Saccamano said. “I did see the ‘Do Not Cross’ sign by Hinman, but it didn’t matter to me because we would just go up to Susquehanna or Hillside [Community] and I would get dropped off there. If we had missed the turn, we would have had to circle back, and that would have been so annoying, but not a major issue.”

More crane work is planned for the coming weeks, according to the Libraries’ statement. Students will be notified by Physical Facilities in the same manner they were notified of this fall break construction — with University announcements in advance and signage at the site.