Radcliffe Science Library redevelopment | University of Oxford
Radcliffe Science Library redevelopment
Radcliffe Science Library redevelopment

Radcliffe Science Library redevelopment

A shared home for study and research

The Radcliffe Science Library building is located on the corner of Parks Road and South Parks Road in the Oxford University Science Area, which is also within the city’s Central Conservation Area.

About the project

The RSL site is being redeveloped to create modern library facilities open to all Bodleian readers; fresh spaces for communal dining, collaboration, exhibitions and public events; and a museums collections centre to facilitate collections-based teaching, research and engagement, and which will also provide high-quality storage for the University collections. In addition, the new graduate society, known as Parks College, will be integrated into these refurbishment plans for the building, creating a new research and social community for graduate students and academic fellows of Parks College.

The building includes the Jackson Wing, built in 1901, and Worthington Wing, built in 1934, and a large basement beneath the Library’s courtyard and the front lawn of the Oxford University Museum of Natural History. The whole redevelopment of the site will also include the adjoining buildings (the western wing of the Inorganic Chemistry Lab and Abbot’s Kitchen) and their connecting spaces.

As part of the redevelopment project, the two-storey RSL basement will be converted into a Museums Collections Teaching & Research Centre, which will have high quality storage facilities for museum collections, as well as a suite of shared, flexible spaces for teaching and public engagement activities.

The aim in refurbishing the rest of the building is to improve the usability, comfort, quality and layout of the library, creating an accessible and modern space which provides group study facilities, informal discussion areas, and quiet study space, together with enhanced access to cutting-edge technology, digital resources and science specialist library staff. As much of the space as possible will be shared so that both Parks College and the science library may make optimal use of the building throughout the academic year.

Completion of the redevelopment of the RSL building and its adjoining buildings is provisionally scheduled for the start of the 2021-22 academic year. 

Public information, consultation and feedback

Past events and consultations

4-5 October 2019 - A public consultation event was held in the Radcliffe Science Library to present the building project proposals, and invite comments and questions. 

21 June 2019 - A public information event about essential maintenance works required for the RSL basement was held at the Oxford University Museum of Natural History.

Questions or comments on the project can be emailed to: public.consultation@admin.ox.ac.uk

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