Friday, October 3, 2014

A Behind-the-Scenes Look at Our New Mobile Compact Shelving

Row of mobile compact shelving units seen from the center of the library's storage area. 

The Grems-Doolittle Library is proud to announce that we recently received a donation of mobile compact shelving, with a maximum storage capacity of over 1,500 cubic feet, from Legere Restorations in Schenectady.

Opening up an aisle in the mobile compact shelving. 

The addition of the mobile compact shelving, which has been installed on one side of the Library’s archives storage area, has increased the maximum storage capacity of the area by over 40%. Prior to the installation of the shelving, the maximum storage capacity of the library's archives storage area was 1,800 feet. Now, with the addition of the compact shelving, we have that much storage capacity on just one side of the storage area -- a huge increase in storage space!

The new shelving allows us lots of room to grow! Our Librarian/Archivist, Melissa Tacke, smiles across the empty shelving units, a few days after the install was completed. 

The additional space provided by the mobile compact shelving allows for the library to better care for its unique collections of personal papers, photograph collections, organizational records, and business records, and makes room for new acquisitions. The reconfiguration of the archival storage area also provides a work area for processing incoming acquisitions and storage space for paintings.

A hand-powered crank moves the shelving units to create an aisle where needed. 

Mobile compact shelving consists of shelving that is mounted on wheeled carriages that travel on rails that have been installed onto the floor. With mobile compact shelving, fixed aisles are not required between every stack; the stacks can be compressed into a smaller space and a single aisle is created as needed by rolling the stacks apart to access a specific section. The shelving, which had previously been used for document storage by Legere Restorations, was donated to the Schenectady County Historical Society in September. Legere Restorations also installed the shelving.

The reconfiguration of our archives storage area also created space for a work area. This is where collections will be processed and rehoused for archival storage.

The Library has sorely needed mobile compact shelving for our archives storage area for at least a decade, but the cost of such shelving is far out of our reach. To have it donated to us is truly a dream come true!

Another view of the rows of mobile compact shelving. 

Do you have questions about the library's mobile compact shelving or our collections? Contact our Librarian at 518-374-09263, ext. 3, or by email at

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