RSL Refurbishment – Update on the project

How time flies! Back at the start of 2020 we packed up the Radcliffe Science Library (RSL) and started the refurbishment project. A lot has happened to us all in that time, but none the less great progress has been made to the refurbishment. It doesn’t seem that long ago that we took down the portraits, emptied the shelves and closed the doors.

Significant work has gone on to make the building safer and more modern. You can breath easy as we have removed the asbestos. It’s no shock that there needed to be some re-wiring and things are going smoothly now that plastering has progressed.

When the refurbishment is finished the building will not only host the RSL but also Reuben College he Oxford University Museums Collections, Teaching and Research Centre (CTRC). We’re all looking forward to moving in which we can announce will happen in time for Michaelmas Term 2023.

We’re really looking forward to having a more modern space with greater adaptability. Before the refurbishment we had one group study room, after we reopen we will have four group study rooms. One will be equipped for Microsoft Teams meetings so you can conduct seemless meetings with colleagues in the room and on Teams. Although we’ll still have shelves of books, more space will be dedicated to comfortable study spaces that suit the needs of modern students and researchers. We will also have quality Wi-Fi and charge points throughout the building.

With the building coming together so well we are starting to plan for furniture. There will be a range of different seating once we open but if you have any thoughts you can always let us know on out Twitter or by emailing rsl@bodleian.ox.ac.uk

Thanks to Morgan Sindall Construction & Infrastructure Ltd for their ongoing hardwork on the refurbishment.

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:

Parks College news updates

Work on renovating the Radcliffe Science Library to form the new Parks College is underway. Parks College now has a website (www.parkscollege.ox.ac.uk/) which has details about the building project at www.parkscollege.ox.ac.uk/about-our-building-project.

There is also a University page with more information on the background to the project: www.ox.ac.uk/about/organisation/future-projects/parks-college.

You can now follow Parks College on Twitter (@ParksCollOx) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/ParksCollegeOxford).

Transfer of Geography books from the Radcliffe Science Library to the Bodleian Social Science Library

As part of the RSL redevelopment project, geography books will move permanently from the RSL to the Bodleian Social Science Library.

The move will commence in mid-July 2019 and will involve approximately 11,000 items. All items will be interfiled in the SSL’s open shelf collections. Books in transit will be unavailable for a short time (up to 72 hours). The main shelfmarks affected by the move will be:

  • D-KF
  • NA
  • QC 854-996
  • QH 75
  • QH 541 – 545

Geography UG and MSc dissertations will also move to the SSL.

Geography books currently on loan should be returned to the RSL until further notice.

If you have any queries, please contact the Geography Subject Librarian, Andy Kernot (andrew.kernot@bodleian.ox.ac.uk, +44 (0)1865 272839).