A recent $5 million retrofit of Ivy Stacks has doubled the capacity of this 10,000-square-foot warehouse, which contains more than 750,000 valuable but rarely requested items from the University Library system. Capacity of this 16-year-old facility was increased by installing motorized 30-foot high bookshelves that move along rails, leaving only one aisle open at a time.

Implementation of the Harvard model of high-density shelving—which organizes materials by height rather than category—further maximizes shelving efficiency by reducing wasted vertical space. 

According to Paul Rittelmeyer, director of interlibrary services, Ivy Stacks is now one of the world’s largest and most modern university library storage facilities.