History of the Perkins Project

History of the Perkins Project

Construction of Bostock and Perkins Tower, 2005

Duke University’s Perkins Library was built in three stages—in 1928, 1948, and 1968.  By the late 1990s, it was clear that it was time for the library to renew and grow again.  In August 2000, Provost Peter Lange established the Perkins Library Renovation Committee and charged it with thinking creatively about the nature of library services and facilities and making recommendations regarding the design and function of Perkins Library.  After two years of planning, the project to expand and renovate the Duke University Libraries was approved by the University’s Board of Trustees in 2002 and construction began in fall 2003.

In October 2005, Bostock Library and the von der Heyden Pavilion opened to the public, providing beautiful spaces and enhanced services to the Duke community. In 2006 a transformed first floor of Perkins was unveiled, followed a year later by the opening of the re-made Perkins lower floor 2 and Deryl Hart administrative suite.  In 2008 Perkins’ floors 2-4 opened, completely upfitted and re-configured, and the Link, a state-of-the-art teaching and learning center on lower floor 1, filled what had been the Perkins basement.  Perkins lower floor 1 is also the new home of the Libraries’ Conservation, Preservation, and Shipping and Receiving departments.  Also in 2008, the Libraries’ technical services operations moved from Perkins to the Smith Warehouse.

With about two-thirds of the Duke University Libraries’ Perkins complex newly constructed or transformed by total renovations, the focus of the Perkins Project turns now to the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, comprising the original 1928 West Campus library building and its 1948 addition.


Timeline of the Perkins Project

2000

Provost Peter Lange establishes the Perkins Library Renovation Committee, charging it with thinking creatively about the nature of library services and facilities and with making recommendations regarding the design and function of Perkins Library.

2000–2002
Working with the Boston architectural firm Shepley Bulfinch, the committee obtains input from all segments of the campus community—faculty, staff, undergraduates, and graduate and professional students. Together, the architects and the committee produce a vision statement, space program, and master plan for the university library.

2001
Construction of Library Service Center is completed, to accommodate materials that must be moved off-site during construction and renovations.

2002
After two years of planning, the project to expand and renovate the Duke University Libraries is approved by the University’s Board of Trustees.

2003
Construction begins on Bostock Library, named in honor the Bostock family, Roy and Merilee and their three children, Victoria Bostock Waters, Matthew Bostock, and Kate Bostock Shefferman. Construction also begins on the von der Heyden Pavilion, named for Karl and Mary Ellen von der Heyden in recognition of their generous financial support and leadership at the university.

2005
Bostock Library and the von der Heyden Pavilion officially open to the public. Renovation work begins on the first floor of Perkins Library.

2006
A transformed first floor of Perkins is unveiled. Work begins on renovating other floors of the library.

2007
Renovations are completed for Perkins Lower Level 2 and the Deryl Hart Administrative Suite.

2008

Perkins floors 2-4 open, completely upfitted and re-configured. The Link, a state-of-the-art teaching and learning center on Lower Level 1, opens in what had been the Perkins basement. That level also becomes the new home of the Libraries’ Preservation and Shipping and Receiving departments. The Libraries’ technical services operations move from Perkins Library to the Smith Warehouse.

2011
David M. Rubenstein pledges $13.6 million to the Libraries. The Board of Trustees renames the special collections library in his honor.

2012–13
Renovation work scheduled to commence on Rubenstein Library. Library administration, staff, collections, and services will move out of the facility to temporary swing space in Perkins and Bostock Libraries. The Political Science department will move temporarily to the Gross Chemistry building, while renovations are made to its final home in the Old Chemistry building.

2015
Target date for completing the library renovation. David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library will move into its new home, completing the Perkins Project.

The Final Phase of the Perkins Project