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Duvall Decker Architects

Duvall Decker Architects

Jackson, MS

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The new Library with visible activity is now a lantern at the center of campus.
The new Library with visible activity is now a lantern at the center of campus.
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James H. White Library Renovations, Mississippi Valley State University

The James H. White Library was sited and built at the center of campus and was designed to be the academic and social locus in this expansive flat landscape in the Mississippi Delta. Over the years, the 75,754 square foot building had fallen into disrepair and out of sync with the needs of a modern library. Very few students or faculty could be found in the library at any time. Even with a limited budget, the building required a full re-envisioning as a modern library to once again fulfill its mission as the academic and social center of campus.

The design strategy was clear – turn the building inside out by moving the stacks to the shadowed interior of the building and opening the perimeter to reading rooms and classrooms. The corners of the building were removed and new two-story glazed corners create light-filled reading and collaboration spaces, inviting patrons to both inside and out.
Since completion, the library is often filled with students, faculty, and staff at all hours of the day and night.

Awards
AIA Mississippi Merit Award

 
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Status: Built
Location: Itta Bena, MS, US
Firm Role: Architect

 
Northwest facade/main entry. A former intense fortress is transformed into an inviting library with corner bay reading rooms and new entry/coffee shop porch.
Northwest facade/main entry. A former intense fortress is transformed into an inviting library with corner bay reading rooms and new entry/coffee shop porch.
New cast-in-place concrete porch at main entrance becomes the campus
New cast-in-place concrete porch at main entrance becomes the campus
Inner stack court at main entrance and circulation desk. Reflective ground face masonry walls carry the reflected light from the corner reading rooms deep into the interior.
Inner stack court at main entrance and circulation desk. Reflective ground face masonry walls carry the reflected light from the corner reading rooms deep into the interior.
Light is borrowed from space to space.
Light is borrowed from space to space.