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August 13, 2018 | by  | in News |
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Kelburn Campus Library Lifts Let Students Down

Victoria University students and staff are approaching two years without lift access to the university’s main library, leaving some to wonder if they will ever be fixed.
As of 31 July, the University estimates that two lifts will be operating between floors three and seven by the end of September 2018. Previous targets aimed for May. This does not restore full access to the upper levels, as the third floor will still only be accessible via the stairwell. Currently, the University estimates that all lifts will be fully restored by the end of December 2019, three years after they were first damaged.

Both lift shafts at Kelburn’s Rankine Brown Library have been out of order since the earthquakes of November 2016. While the first and second floors are accessible by lift via the Hub, floors three to nine can only be reached by the stairs. Students unable to access these floors can request items via an online form, which are delivered to the Glass Room three times daily.

CanDo President Lilli Street said the book retrieval service “can be a timely process” for students using mobility aids. They also pointed out that these students can’t access the J. C. Beaglehole Room, the university’s collection of archival and heritage materials. “The J.C. Beaglehole room does not loan its resources to students to take home,” said Lilli, meaning items cannot be accessed via the retrieval service.
Stephen Costley, Victoria’s Director of Property Services, said the delays can be attributed the complex nature of lift repairs, saying it requires careful staging and a solution that allows contractors to work safely in and around the lift shafts while keeping the building operational and causing minimal noise and disruption for staff and students.
When Salient inquired about the costs of the repairs, Costley said, “The University is currently working on an insurance claim for these and other earthquake repair works in the Rankine Brown Building and is unable to disclose the cost of the works at this time”.

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