JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas –
When patrons now enter the Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland library, they will be greeted with a totally new library look and experience.
The JBSA-Lackland library, which opened in May 1969, was one of seven Air Force libraries approved last year for $274,000 in military funds to remodel. The library’s new design is part of a modern bookstore layout plan many libraries are gravitating toward.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held March 7, 2018 to usher in the grand reopening of the JBSA-Lackland library. Library staff members conducted tours of the newly organized facility to help visitors experience a smooth transition.
“It’s also all about the display,” said April Cottrell, JBSA-Lackland library technician. “Materials [that are] out on display [are] to show patrons what we have.”
The shorter shelves are 60 inches high and located throughout the library. The front section, a busy part of the library, was reconfigured to accommodate the children section, the young adult section and a computer area.
Library staff members began working on this project a year and a half ago, according to Pamela Navarrette, JBSA-Lackland librarian.
The staff began by changing all library books from the decimal system to listing them by categories. They looked through approximately 27,000 books and items and discarded unused, older books.
“We have had to re-catalog all of our items and anything that was non-fiction had to be re-catalog into category,” said Navarrette, adding that brand new labeling was also done throughout the library so that each category book matched and were in the same place.
The back part of the library now houses the adult and non-fiction sections, study rooms, and a new enclosed children’s programming room which helps keep the back section quiet for patrons who need to read or study.
“When we do story time we have the songs and the story, but then we also do crafts so the tables are set up so the kids can sit down and do the crafts and parents can hover from there,” said Cottrell.
“To bring back the children’s section has been a great addition and to see the kid’s faces when they walk in now is just almost breathtaking because they are just in awe,” said Navarrette.
Patrons will also notice new tables and chairs throughout the library, display units, and plenty of signage to direct them to newly organized areas.
“To get new all new stuff throughout the library has just been wonderful,” added Navarrette.
The library was closed for three weeks while staff members removed furniture, cleared the walls of old signage and art displays, removed books off the old shelves, categorized them and then placed them back on the new shelves.
The upgrades were done with the intent of providing an even more positive experience when patrons visit, according to Cottrell.
“I’m hoping that [the patrons] see the work and the thought that we’ve put in for how things were,” Cottrell said.
Over 250 patrons use the JBSA-Lackland library daily.
“I think it has been a morale booster for everybody, especially the employees,” said Navarrette.
The JBSA-Lackland library is located at 1930 George Avenue and is open Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is closed on Sundays.