Jean Nelson

About Jean Nelson

Jean Cardinale Nelson is the head of the UConn Libraries' Public Programming, Marketing & Communications efforts.

Upcoming Summer Work – Babbidge Stairwell

This summer we will begin work on the construction of a new staircase in Babbidge Library. The work will begin on May 13 and is anticipated to continue through January 2020. The bulk of the work will be done during the summer months and times when students are not in the facility to minimize the disruption but there will be work throughout the whole period of time.

Rendering, Babbidge Library South Plaza StairwellThe staircase will be built on the south side of the building and is designed as a way to get from floor to floor but also as an addition exit in the event of an emergency. It will require that the Q Center relocate and we will provide more information on that as we move through construction.

For Library staff and other offices in the building, we will be holding two briefings to discuss the timeline and how it will affect the building:

April 17, 10-11am – Class of ’47
April 23, 2-3pm – Class of ’47

We will be adding regular updates here as the construction moves along.

The furniture is arriving

We are down to a week and a half before classes start which means that things are moving quickly on the first floor and we are starting to see it come to life.

Here are a few shots we took today on a walk around (make sure you hover on the images for location)

Things are starting to take shape!

That’s right! Things are starting to take shape up on Level 1. Ceilings are certainly not the first place you look, but it is the first place you work during construction. So the lights have all been replaced with environmentally friendly LED lighting, the ceiling has been painted, as has many of the walls. And one of the biggest projects was the overhead fire door installation. That was completed today and it looks pretty nice.

The new overhead fire door on Level 1. With this in we can re-open the center stairwell.










The carpet came in too! Boxes and boxes of it. What do you think?

Check out the new carpet! (pardon our mess)










We are also seeing the data visualization lab taking shape. This is going to be a centerpiece of the floor!

The data visualization lab is starting to take shape!








We are looking good and on target!

Master Plan Construction Update – 7/7

Happy Friday! If you happened to be in Homer Babbidge today I hope you brought a sweatshirt! The steam shut down was longer than anticipated so it was pretty chilly.

Today we had the pleasure of showing Simon Neame, Dean of the UMass Amherst Library around the changes while he visited and we snapped a few photos to share.

See that wall? This is what will soon become bar top work stations all around the raised floor where the desktop computer were.











This is wild – see that circle. That used to be a brick wall and now it’s open. This is partly why things have been so loud and why the center staircase has been unavailable this week. 



Martha Bedard, Vice Provost and Simon Neame, Dean of the UMass Amherst Library get an update from Holly Phillips, Assistant Vice Provost.




Getting ready to welcome UITS Service Center offices.





























Master Plan Updates – 6/22

This week we have started to see a few finishes, but mostly structural work on Level 1. The paint that you may have smelled when coming in is from the fresh coat on all of the ceiling on the floor. Looks nice, clean and bright. Take a look at the progress.

From the center staircase, looking East, walls are being framed where new computer spaces will be












The new glass window where our new MakerSpace will be located



















The new flooring in the UITS Service Center looks like wood, but is actually carpet!



















This is the view into the new event space on Level 4.




It’s going to be another noisy week…

So what has all the noise been about? Two major demo projects – the first is what is happening in the photo below. You may recognize the lower blue concrete wall that encases the center staircase coming up from the Plaza. The grey cement behind it is now gone. It will be open similar to the entrance to the stairs on the Plaza.










There is also work being done to add another unisex and accessible bathroom on the floor. Work in these two areas is where the jackhammer drilling is happening. We expect that there will be more drilling next week so be prepared for noise.

There is also a shell started for what will be a new computer bar that runs around the perimeter of the computer cafe. These will be high-top seating with stools, and lots of power to plug in.




Level 1 – what does it look like?

A bit of a war zone…

Exciting Changes Ahead for the Homer Babbidge Library

Since 1978, the Homer Babbidge Library has served as an intellectual, learning, cultural, creative and social hub for the UConn community. Our unique role on campus comes from both our physical location and our mission to overcome boundaries and serve all disciplines. As UConn continues to look towards its future, we have made a commitment to adapting the space within the brick exterior of the Babbidge Library into a center of innovation, knowledge and University growth and development to further the University’s mission of excellence in research, education, service, and engagement.

Over the last two years we have been planning for major renovations that will span over a five year period starting today.

As of today, Level 1 will be closed to the public until the start of the fall 2017 semester. By then, it will barely be recognizable. More on that later. So where will you find the services currently found on Level 1?

Computer & Printers –
We will be moving the computers, scanners, microform, and husky bucks machines to the Auriemma Reading Room located behind the iDesk on the Plaza level. This will be taking place Monday and Tuesday. You can also find computers in Bookworms Cafe, Level B Microlab, any of the floor lobby computers, and laptops for loan at the iDesk.

Assistive technology will be moved to the Level B lobby.

Staff –
If you are looking for Library staff located on the first floor, please contact them directly or stop at the iDesk for help. Staff in the Q Center and W centers can also be reached directly to make arrangements.

We are also starting construction on the South side of Level 2 to accommodate the new location for the Q and W centers. The floor will not be completely closed to the public but this construction is expected to be disruptive for those studying on that side of the floor.

If you need assistance with something, please contact us via Library Security at 860.486.3099 or via cell at 860.208.6305.

Please check back here for further updates as well as on Facebook and Twitter.