As the space which formerly housed the IT Center of Rush Rhees Library undergoes renovation to become the Barbara J. Burger iZone, large amounts of furniture are being moved to new homes throughout the University and in the surrounding community. In total over three tons (6,300 pounds of furniture) were given a new home, including tables, chairs, computers, and couches from the space.
With each renovation project in River Campus Libraries, Buildings and Projects Manager Randall Cook seeks to rehome or repurpose as much furniture as possible. Cook explains that in this project, “The River Campus Libraries were able to use some of the content, but we also were able to find homes for some of the furniture in four other River Campus Departments.” Cook adds, “It was also really nice to have been of help to a startup company here in Rochester by giving them 15 two-person computer tables.”
River Campus Libraries has adopted all of the Herman Miller tables (rectangle, squares, and rounds) to be implemented in Rush Rhees and Carlson. Soft seating and coffee tables that used to be on the mezzanine level of the IT Center have been moved to Gleason Library to replace some furniture in bad condition.
Many Caper chairs from the space have gone to the former Writing and Speaking Center, which has recently become the 304 study space on the third floor of Rush Rhees Library. Event and Classroom Management has adopted the remaining Caper chairs that were not placed into the 304 study space.
Five wood laminate tables from the area have been moved to the Miner Library at the Medical Center. Rettner Hall has also been given a few tables for their space. Some of what was leftover has gone to the Institute of Optics to be reused.
The repurposing and “re-homing” of furniture from the former IT Center is an excellent example of extending the life of goods. This is a truly impactful way to be more sustainable by keeping over three tons of furniture in good condition from going to the landfill or even from being recycled. Under management of Randall Cook the furniture was distributed to places where it could be used efficiently for many more years.
Written by Mariah Greico, Class of 2018