Charles Library is Officially the Coolest Spot on Campus

Photo by Francesca Furey

Photo by Francesca Furey

By Rebekah Harding

After what seemed like an eternity (more than three years, actually) of Liacouras Walk being partially blocked off and construction noises acting as an extra alarm clock, Charles Library is finally open for business! The class of 2023 won’t know the struggle—lucky you—but the library is buzzing and everyone is giddy to try all of the innovative features of the new coolest building on Main Campus.

From an extremely modern and sustainable main floor to a jaw-dropping center oculus to tons of more space for student collaboration, Charles has gained the love and attention from mostly every Owl on campus.

Andrea Sarmiento, a senior global studies major, remembers when it was literally a hole in the ground. But even after dealing with the construction for her entire time at Temple, Sarmiento thinks it was completely worth it.

“There were some theories that it wouldn’t even be done by the time I graduate,” said Sarmiento. “The space is definitely more open and looks better without the red fences and I’m glad I’m still here to see it.”

From battery banks and charging stations in the main work areas, to VR labs and a Makers’ Station (that features a pretty dope 3D printer), Charles Library was designed for student productivity and innovation in mind. 

Photo by Francesca Furey

Photo by Francesca Furey

Even the angles and geometry of the interior is designed to lighten echoes and to create a zen study space even when filled with students. And of course, we can’t forget the new time-saving book retrieval system, dubbed “Book Bot”! Hundreds of thousands of books are at your fingertips, and can be ordered in advance. Unfortunately, Book Bot’s estimated wait time is about an hour for the opening week due to the obvious high demand. You won’t need those books until after syllabus week, anyway… well, hopefully.

Gloria Kammer, a sophomore health professions major, watched the final pieces of Charles Library come together as a freshman and is excited to make the new library her go-to study spot this year.

“I’m really excited to see the robots retrieve the books and I want to see how they incorporate more space for work,” said Kammer. “I studied a lot last year in Paley and the TECH Center, but the space here is so open, so I think I’ll end up studying here more.”

If you’re looking for an Instagram photo-op in the near future, Charles Library will also be opening one of the largest green roofs in Pennsylvania, with an unbeatable view of campus (sorry Fox Business skywalk). And if being a social media guru isn’t your scene, the terrace still provides a gorgeous, outdoor studying and people-watching spot. The green roof is accessible from the fourth floor, which also holds physical stacks of books, study rooms, and reading rooms.

Megan Mahoney, a freshman media studies and production major, along with her new friends are particularly excited to explore the currently restricted fourth floor and green roof, but still spent the afternoon exploring the rest of the building.

Photo by Francesca Furey

Photo by Francesca Furey

“My favorite part of the building is how modern it is, along with the windows that emphasize Temple’s beautiful campus. I was also happy to learn about the new coffee place called Stella’s,” Mahoney said.

Conclusion of construction and the complete opening of all facilities are expected by the end of October, just in time for midterm season. 

If you want to get a full look at Charles Library for yourself, tours are available on the top of the hour from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. this week.

Temple students can look forward to a school year spent studying and trying all the new features in the coolest new building on campus.