Construction, Higher Education, and Real Estate

GVSU opens $22M expansion of Zumberge Library

March 29, 2013
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GVSU plans $22M expansion of Zumberge Library
A rendering of the expanded James H. Zumberge Library at Grand Valley State University’s Allendale campus. Courtesy Via Design

Work is set to begin on renovating and expanding the James H. Zumberge Library at Grand Valley State University.

The $22 million project will add another 90,000 square feet to the five-story structure that is centrally located on GVSU’s Allendale campus, and it will provide the university with a new use for the building.

The building is named in honor of the university’s first president, who held that post from 1963 through 1969, the year the structure was built. Four of the building’s stories house the library, while executive offices fill the ground floor.

Mike Houseman of Wolverine Building Group, the firm managing the project, said the work will help consolidate several university departments and allow GVSU to free up much needed classroom space in other buildings.

“Our team is working to preserve the historical architecture and intertwine new, modern features,” said Houseman, who is directing the project for Wolverine. Via Design is the project’s architect. The work will be done to silver LEED standards.

The library holds 777,000 volumes, 523,000 electronic journals and books, and scores of other materials. The Zumberge Library also is a U.S. Government and State of Michigan Depository Library, so it has a wealth of federal and state documents.

University-issued bonds and capital development funds are paying for the work. The library will close on April 27. When the building reopens in May 2014, it will be called James H. Zumberge Hall.

“It will be used for administrative functions, including the consolidation of many departments on campus,” said Matt Larson, senior project manager at Wolverine.

University officials said a satellite library has been set up in the Thornapple Room of the Kirkhof Center and it will become operational on April 26, a day before the Zumberge Library closes.

Construction on GVSU’s new Mary Idema Pew Library Learning and Information Commons is expected to be completed this summer. The new and more modern library presented university officials with an opportunity to repurpose the Zumberge Library.

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