Even in a digital age, UBC Library’s physical collections grow and require a long-term strategy for storage, access and preservation. North American research libraries have used high-density storage facilities for many years to address these needs. UBC Library is fortunate to have two such facilities: ASRS and PARC.
In 2005, the Library opened the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS), its robotic storage facility in the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre. In the following decade, the Library's physical collections continued to grow, and with it our need for space to house them. In 2015 we opened a new storage facility, Library Preservation and Archives (PARC).
Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS)
UBC Library is the first in Canada to use this technology to provide fast, easy and effective storage and retrieval. The system operates in a secure, climate-controlled setting, providing an optimal environment for the preservation of print and other materials. With a capacity of 1.8 million volumes, the ASRS is located inside the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre at 1961 East Mall.
Materials previously kept in the closed storage areas of Main Library as well as materials selected by Library bibliographers and advisory committees are housed in the ASRS. These materials include, but are not limited to:
- Older and lesser used social science materials
- Pre-1978 language and literature in Slavic, East European, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German, and Asian languages
- UBC theses
- Older editions of children’s literature
- Vinyl LPs
- Books in Indic languages not taught at UBC
- Music bound periodicals (a selection)
- Science & engineering bound periodicals
- Selected items from various UBC Libraries
Library Preservation and Archives (PARC)
Library Preservation and Archives, aka Library PARC, is a new modular storage facility built to accommodate the future growth of collections at UBC Library. Located at UBC Vancouver’s South Campus (in the Research Precinct), PARC provides 2,280 square metres of high-density collection storage and can house about 1.6 million volumes. The facility also houses a campus-wide records management service, a small digitization area, a staff work area and a publicly accessible reading room.
PARC is a high-density storage facility designed to house little- to no-use items owned by UBC Library. The facility also has a records management service for the UBC campus. Library PARC also has: an administrative area where books are cleaned, repaired, catalogued and digitized; a reading room for visitors wishing to view material stored in the facility; and one large climate-controlled storage module where books will be housed. In the future, up to five additional storage modules could be added based on need.
PARC also houses the University's Records Management Office.
Low-circulation items from the Library’s collections will be relocated to Library PARC, freeing up physical space at branches for other uses, including student and research services, study spaces and informal learning areas, multimedia labs, scholarly exchanges and more.
Selection criteria will vary across disciplines, departments and collections, but typically include:
- Low-use, last-copy monographs, serials, series and unique archival holdings that have projected future low use
- Texts that may reliably be found completely online (especially journals and indexes where electronic surrogate criteria are applicable)
- Runs of rarely used serials
- Physical copies of digitized texts
- Runs of older serials where there is a last-copy commitment, usually available online
- Requests for material to be retrieved from the ASRS can be submitted using the Library’s online catalogue.
- Items must be picked up at the Circulation Desk of the I. K. Barber Learning Centre.
- Items will usually be available for pickup in approximately 15 minutes between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday, and after 30 minutes at all other opening hours.
- If you are travelling a far distance to pick up an item you have requested from the ASRS, it is recommended that you call the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre's Circulation Desk first to ensure your item is available: (604) 822-8149.
Retrieving materials from the ASRS in five easy steps:
- Materials held in ASRS can be found in the Library’s online catalogue.
- I.K. BARBER LIBRARY ASRS storage – These materials can be signed out and renewed.
- I.K. BARBER LIBRARY ASRS storage (branch use only) – These materials can only be used in the Library branch and must be returned by the end of the business day.
- XWI7XWA ASRS storage – These materials can be signed out and renewed.
- XWI7XWA ASRS storage (branch use only) – These materials can only be used in the Library branch and must be returned by the end of the business day.
- If the location of your item is I. K. Barber Learning Centre ASRS storage and its status is Available, you may place an online request.
- Click on the Request this item: Recall/ASRS link in the “Actions” box on the right-hand side of the screen.
3. Log in
- In the next screen, you need to login to the Library Catalogue using either your UBC/Library barcode and PIN, or using CWL if you are a student.
- If you do not have a library card, a staff member at the Circulation Desk of the I. K. Barber Learning Centre can retrieve the item for you.
- After you have logged in, select ASRS Request from the list of available links to place an ASRS request.
- Next, Select an Item and choose to Pick Up At I.K. BARBER circulation. *
- Click Submit.
*NOTE: Regardless of your selected pick-up location, all items are to be picked up at the Circulation Desk of the I. K. Barber Learning Centre.
5. Pick up
- This message indicates that your request was successful.
- You can pick up your material from the Circulation Desk of the I. K. Barber Learning Centre usually within 10 minutes.
- Requested materials will be held for 3 days.
Ordering Materials from PARC
1. Materials held in PARC can be found in the Library’s online catalogue.
- PARC (branch use only) – Can be shipped to any Library branch except Robson Square and BCCW Study and Learning Commons. These materials can only be used in the Library branch and must be returned by the end of the business day.
- PARC (circulating) – Can be shipped to any Library branch. These materials can be signed out and renewed.
- XWI7XWA PARC (branch use only) - Can be shipped to any Library branch except Robson Square and BCCW Study and Learning Commons. These materials can only be used in the Library branch and must be returned by the end of the business day.
- XWI7XWA PARC (circulating) - Can be shipped to any Library branch. These materials can be signed out and renewed.
2. To obtain material from PARC, UBC Library cardholders will use the Document Delivery system.
3. Materials requested before 11:00 am and shipped to UBC Vancouver locations and will normally be available for pickup within two business days.
4. Materials shipped to UBC Okanagan will normally be available for pickup within three business days.
5. You will receive an email with the material is available for pickup.
6. Community members who do not have a UBC Library card
- Can request PARC materials by going to the following branches: Koerner, IKBLC, Woodward or Okanagan.
- Materials can only be picked up and used at one of these branches. They cannot be removed from the branch.
- Materials will be available for use within 2-3 working days after the request is placed, if placed before 11 am.
- Can order materials from PARC via interlibrary loan from their local public library.
Using Document Delivery
- a. Search the Library ‘s catalog.
- b. Display the full record.
- c . Click on Order via Document Delivery.
- d. Choose either Loan or Copy (i.e photocopy of chapter) for a book or Copy for a journal. If you need the entire volume of a journal, please add a note in the Document Delivery order form note field.
- e. Authenticate yourself using your barcode and pin
- f. Complete the order form.
- g. Click on Send Request
- h. You will receive an email indicating that your request has been received
- i. When the item arrives at the pickup location, you will receive an email messaging saying that the item is available for pickup.
PARC Document Delivery questions?
- If the item can not be located at PARC, PARC staff will inform Document Delivery that the item is MISSING, and Document Delivery will, in turn, let you know that the item is not available.
- If you are having difficulties with receiving an item from PARC, please, contact Document Delivery, and they will help find an answer for you.
- Please do not contact PARC if an item is late to appear, because your requests are being tracked by the Document Delivery system.