Lower-ground floor reopens

Thank you to everyone for your patience last week. The lower-ground floor of the Radcliffe Science Library has now reopened. Our group study rooms, study carrells and Wellbeing Room are now opan and ready for use.

Photograph of Group Study Room 1 showing a desk surrounded by 6 chairs with a screen on the wall.

Group Study room 1 is open and available for bookings.

Unfortunately there is still a small bit of work ongoing on in the lower-ground floor. The break out area and the staircase accessing it will be out of use for Monday and Tuesday of this week. (25 and 26 March).

We apologise for the inconvenience.

Update on the RSL redevelopment project

The construction work on the Radcliffe Science Library building and Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory is continuing after some delays during the Covid-19 pandemic. The library is now scheduled to reopen in the summer of 2023.

Radcliffe Science Library Worthington wing exterior from courtyard

Worthington wing exterior from courtyard image courtesy of Morgan Sindall)

The completed building will house Reuben College, the Radcliffe Science Library (currently operating from a temporary home in the Vere Harmsworth Library) and the Oxford University Museums Collections, Teaching and Research Centre (CTRC).

The site consists of:

  • The Jackson and Worthington wings of the Radcliffe Science Library building (Grade II listed)
  • Part of the current Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory
  • A two-storey basement area
Aerial view of the Radcliffe Science Library and Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory site with planned work marked

Aerial view of the site (image courtesy of Morgan Sindall)

The works in process involve:

  • Enabling works, including the removal of asbestos
  • Refurbishment of internal spaces to create flexible and modern library facilities in support of science and medicine in Oxford
  • External landscaping including the reinstatement of lawn area and dinosaur footprints outside the Oxford University Museum of Natural History.
  • Waterproofing of the two-storey basement area

Morgan Sindall Construction & Infrastructure Ltd are the Principal Contractor for the works.

Morgan Sindall logo

Images of the Radcliffe Science Library before work commenced:

Images of work in progress (courtesy of Morgan Sindall):

UPDATE: More images of work in progress (courtesy of Morgan Sindall) – added 27 June 2022:

Building works outside the Vere Harmsworth Library

Essential construction works will be occurring on the Direct Labour Organisation (DLO) offices outside the Rothermere American Institute building, with the most disruptive works occurring from the 28th March-8th April 2022 (approx). The construction works will be located on the north side of RAI (facing South Parks Road and the Archaeology building).

The DLO has informed the RAI and VHL that essential works on the DLO offices will be taking place from the 21st March -5th May 2022. The most disruptive period of the construction works will occur approximately 28th March-8th April, when the construction workers will be breaking up concrete. This work will be noisy and create dust. After this period, the works should be less disruptive, although there will be some general background noise.

The works will not affect access into the RAI building, and the VHL will remain open as advertised.

The VHL and RAI have been told that the construction workers will be putting in place mitigations to reduce the volume of dust whenever possible. However, because of this, the windows on the north side of the building will be kept closed, to avoid dust clouds coming into the library. The windows on the south side of the building (facing Mansfield College and the Princess Margaret Gardens) will be opened by staff, in line with University and Bodleian Libraries guidance, but may be closed by readers if they wish.

To reduce noise disruption when working in the library, readers are recommended to avoid sitting near the windows on the north side of the library. Readers are also welcome to ask for earplugs, which are provided for free at the enquiry desk.

We apologise for any inconvenience or disruption caused to readers.

If you have any further questions about working in the Vere Harmsworth Library, please ask at the Information Desk, or email vhl@bodleian.ox.ac.uk. For further information about the DLO construction works, email Bethan Davies, VHL Librarian at bethan.davies@bodleian.ox.ac.uk.