U.S. Courts Design Guide
Shelving must be provided for manuals and aids in the CALR area. Shelving must
also be provided within each workstation for papers and books.
Bookstacks. Bookshelf sections are typically 36 inches (925 mm) wide, six to seven
shelves high, with a minimum ten inches (250 mm) nominal depth per shelf face.
Cantilever-type shelving is preferable wherever seismic anchoring is needed. Built-in
metal shelving systems with end panels, incorporating wood or other decorative
finishes, must be used. The majority of the collection must be shelved on double-faced
units with adjustable shelves and a reference pull-out shelf every other section. CD-
ROM stations must be available in the library. All shelving must be consistent with
seismic zone design requirements.
Aisles must be at least 36 inches (925 mm) wide, with 48-inch (1225 mm) cross aisles
at the end; each aisle must be no more than seven or eight units long. Major traffic
aisles must be at least 60 inches (1525 mm) wide. Floors must accommodate at least
150 pounds per square foot (PSF) or 7200 pascals (Pa) live load for normal shelving
areas. In libraries with severe space constraints, the collection may be shelved in
movable compact shelving. This requires tracks recessed in the floor or raised flooring.
Floors supporting this type of shelving must accommodate live loads of at least 300
PSF (14350 Pa).
Libraries with collections located on more than one floor must be equipped with
dumbwaiters large enough to accommodate a library cart.
Rare Book/Court Archives Room. Specially designed and lockable bookshelving
provided by the court may be required if the room is accessible to the public or used
for conferences. If the collection is to be made a focal point or decorative element in
the room, shelving with glass doors and display lighting must be provided. Other
furnishings may include display cases, a conference table, and armchairs.
Interior windows are desirable, allowing staff to monitor the space and extending any
decorative aspects of the room into the rest of the library.
Study Spaces. Group study rooms must have adequate space for tables and chairs. A
room reserved solely for court personnel may have either tables or study carrels,
depending upon court needs.
Staff Offices. Library staff offices are generally furnished with L- or U-shaped desks
or workstations, depending upon the size of the office. The circuit librarian is provided
executive-level furnishings, including a minimum of four book sections, two file
cabinets, and two visitor chairs. Smaller library staff offices require fewer of the same
furnishings. All staff workstations must accommodate a computer, typewriter, printer,
and other accessories.
Technical Services Area. The technical services area must accommodate bookshelf
units, work tables, book carts, supply cabinets, and file cabinets. In some libraries,
staff workstations can be incorporated into this space. A built-in counter with a sink