Truman State University’s Pickler Memorial Library has completely reopened after undergoing construction to update its fire alarm and sprinkler system.
The library project began in summer 2018 and all major work was recently completed.
Dave Rector, vice president for administration, finance and planning, said the construction project was a long process the University had been looking at for many years. Rector said the main focus of the project was replacing the fire sprinkler systems in all four floors of the library, but some lighting was also replaced and updated.
He said the project is 99 percent finished and on schedule. There are only a few minor details left involving controls and computer chips that run the sprinkler system, and those should be complete within the next 2-3 weeks.
Rector said Truman had budgeted $3.1 million for the project. This included architectural designing and construction. He said he anticipates the project will be completed under budget, and money had been saved for several years in the University’s maintenance repair fund for this project.
Associate dean of libraries Amanda Langendoerfer said preparing for the construction was an extensive and strategic process. She said the staff mentally prepared for significant disruption, but the project went very smoothly.
“The contractors were great,” Langendoerfer said. “They were very conscientious of the fact that this was a public building, and they really worked with the staff to make sure that the timing was appropriate when they would begin working and really made an effort to complete their work but try to stay behind the scenes.”
She said staff are happy to have the library reopened and the facilities fully operational again. She said she is encouraging people to come back and start using the study spaces again, especially the third-floor reading room, which was updated during the project with funds from several donors.