From our online suggestion box: heating and cooling the library

Milne Library has a easy way for you to give us feedback or make suggestions: our online suggestion box.

In addition to a direct email reply, we will be posting answers to your suggestions and questions here on the Milne Library blog.

Our latest suggestion is from an undergraduate student:

It is freezing upstairs (and downstairs too). I spend a lot of time on the quiet floor studying, and find that I have to wear my coat. And sometimes my gloves. I love to study up there, but I am deterred sometimes by the temperature. The Wadsworth library is warmer, but has limited hours so I don’t really have alternative options in the village. Can you please turn the heat up?

Thank you for sharing your concerns with us regarding heating issues in the library. Unfortunately, we have no control over the heating (or cooling) system for Milne Library. Since we, the staff, spend 8 or more hours a day in the building, we would love to be able to regulate the heat.

However, “heat” for all Academic and Administrative Buildings on campus is produced by the boilers at the Heating Plant and distributed to buildings through a system of pipes carrying pressurized steam. Pasted below, is the College’s Facility Services policy regarding heating and cooling of buildings on campus (see the full documents here (PDF)).

Building Heating and Cooling:
Building maintenance adheres to the established State energy conservation guidelines for the heating and cooling of campus buildings as follows:

  • During the heating season building temperature is maintained at a minimum of 68 degrees.
  • During the cooling season buildings with central air conditioning are maintained at a maximum temperature of 78 degrees.

The physical condition and unique characteristics of campus buildings and the efficiency of heating and cooling systems impacts our ability to maintain the target temperatures within all spaces.

The heating season typically begins at the end of September and the cooling season typically begins at the end of May. Special event requirements or extreme temperature conditions can alter the heating and cooling startup schedule.

Academic building heating temperatures are “set back” after working hours according to occupancy schedules provided by Campus Scheduling and Special Events Planning. Unoccupied Academic buildings and those buildings scheduled by Residential Life as unoccupied are “setback” during curtailment and observed breaks. During the summer, air conditioning is available in Erwin, South Hall, Milne and College Union. All other spaces are cooled according to occupancy schedules provided by Events Planning. Please contact the Supervisor of Zone Maintenance for further information.