John Harvard Library, Southwark

Client name:
London Borough of Southwark

Quantity Surveying


The project involved the total refurbishment of the existing library and major alterations to form a new and improved staff and ancillary accommodation.

The external windows were removed and replaced with large glazed areas in the form of curtain walling to provide a very open and inviting appearance. There is also a new main entrance area formed by enclosing the existing open area with glazed walls with a new set of automatic opening main entrance doors directly onto Borough High Street. There is also a new illuminated projecting canopy over the main entrance doors.

The mechanical and electrical installations were completely renewed. The library also provides the latest self check in and out of books, CD’s and the like.

The existing staff work and rest areas were remodelled to provide improved facilities with the alteration of room layouts and addition of new partitions. These areas were also upgraded by the provision of new roof lights in existing concrete or timber flat roof areas to provide natural daylight. The library encourages greater community use of the building and its facilities by the alteration of existing walls and the provision of secure access into these areas. Also there is the provision of a coffee bar area to encourage greater community use and to ‘drop in’ to the library.

The library is situated on Borough High Street in London and is in close proximity to residential estates and Universities, notably the Guy’s Campus. It is anticipated that the library will have a higher profile and encourage even more use of its facilities.

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John Harvard Library, Southwark