UC Berkeley press release


New addition to UC Berkeley Main Library dedicated to former UC President David Gardner

by Fernando Quintero

Berkeley -- The latest addition to UC Berkeley's Main Library has been named in honor of David P. Gardner, the University of California's 15th president and a strong advocate for educational excellence.

The library's main stacks, which were designed to accommodate the growth of the humanities and social sciences collections until 2006, were dedicated to Gardner at a ceremony held June 11 and attended by UC Berkeley Chancellor Chang-Lin Tien.

With a grand circular stairway descending 60 feet underground, the stacks include 52 miles of new bookshelves. The total capacity will eventually reach 3 million volumes.

Gardner's UC career spanned 24 years, beginning as a graduate student at UC Berkeley where he earned both his master's and PhD. He was a professor of higher education at Santa Barbara and Berkeley, served as vice chancellor at UC Santa Barbara and became the systemwide president in 1983. He retired in 1992.

An advocate for quality education, especially at the undergraduate level, he served as chairman of the National Commission on Excellence in Education and helped author the report, "A Nation At Risk," that launched a national effort to improve schooling in America.

The new stacks, combined with The Bancroft Library, Doe Library and Moffitt Library, covers a total of approximately 12 acres, making it one of the largest academic library complexes in the world.

The stacks, which cost $42 million including furnishings and equipment, were designed by the San Francisco firm Esherick, Homsey, Dodge, Davis.

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