University of Southampton - Hartley Library (Phase 2)

The Hartley Library is the main Library of the University of Southampton on the Highfield campus and home to the University Archives & Special Collections - which include rare books and materials. It offers five levels of printed books, journals and materials and an extensive collection of online journals and e-books. The Library provides computer workstations in the building, robust wifi as well as powered study spaces for students’ own equipment.

We previously completed Phase 1 of the refurbishment in Hartley Library which can be seen here.


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Areas on Levels 1, 4 and 5 of the Hartley Library have benefitted from the summer 2017 refurbishment. On Levels 1 and 4, new quiet study spaces are provided in areas of the building previously not open to users. A new Group Study Room has been created on Level 4, power is supplied to all new desk tops and the two Level 4 Library Training Rooms are now presented and equipped to the high, modern standard students require. In total around 450 additional study spaces have been provided.

BOF engaged with the University Project Team, the contractors, LST and Kendall Kingscott architects. Amongst the many ranges we supplied were Workbays from Vitra, our own Symphony desking, seating from Orangebox, Ocee Design & Vitra and Kite Tables.

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The design scheme utilises the innovative Vitra Workbay throughout the Library refurbishment to create areas for students to choose how they want to learn… whether that is through group collaboration or individual focused study. Throughout the building elements of the original interior architecture have been retained. These historical features combine with bright, clean wall finishes, enhancing the overall light in the space and creating a vivid contrast between the old and the new.

"The new furniture is much less intimidating than the rows and rows of old desks on this level. The space is used better and power is provided for the desk tops, so all good."

Year Four, Coastal Management Student.
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"We have got the Library back again and this time it is clean, bright, fresh and thanks to the BOF furniture provides the kind of learning and study environments we are proud to offer to all of our students, academics and researchers."

Debra Morris - Projects, Innovations & Development Manager


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