William T. Young Library

Quick Facts

William T. Young Library opened April 3, 1998. Physical access to the UK Libraries' social sciences, humanities and life sciences collections has become much easier, with widely scattered material brought together in one site. The library includes 16 group study/seminar rooms and seating for 350 in faculty/dissertation study areas. The building has six elevators, and all floors are fully accessible to people with physical disabilities.

* The William T. Young Library opened April 3, 1998. Jane Vance wrote a poem, "For the Tenth Anniversary of the W. T. Young Library," for the 2008 anniversary.

* The library bears the name of successful Lexington businessman and horse breeder William T. Young. Mr. Young's gift of $5 million kicked off a fund-raising campaign that raised $21 million. A 1939 mechanical engineering graduate of UK, William Young's businesses included Big Top Peanut Butter and W. T. Young Storage. His thoroughbred horses included 1996 Kentucky Derby winner Grindstone.

* The building measures 365,000 square feet (including a basement and five floors), seats over 4,000 patrons and will house 1.2 million volumes (in 198,828 linear feet or 37 miles).

* The library provides 3,000 general seats, with 1,000 additional seats in classrooms and meeting rooms.

* The library includes 21 group study/seminar rooms and seating for 350 in faculty/dissertation study areas.

* The building has six elevators, and all floors are fully accessible to people with physical disabilities.

* The building sits on 120 concrete pilings that rest on bedrock.

* Information on the polished limestone in the library
(from a description sent by Dieter Schmid)
The polished limestone, which is very widespread in Germany (and apparently also in Kentucky) represents the so-called "Treuchtlinger Marmor" or "Treuchtlingen Marble." It is excavated in southern Germany at several locations in the surroundings of Treuchtlingen which is located in the Franconian Alb in Bavaria. The age of the Treuchtlingen Formation is Late Jurassic, Middle Kimmeridgian.

The Treuchtlingen Formation is characterized by thick limestone banks representing sponge biostromes. The macrofauna consists mainly of siliceous sponges (hexactinellids and lithistids), ammonites, belemnites, and brachiopods (terebratulids and rhynchonellids). This association typically occurs in middle to deep ramp settings at the northern Tethyan margin. However, there are also some prominent microfaunal elements which form major parts of the rock. You will have noticed the somewhat patchy appearance of the limestone. The dark patches, often forming pillar-like to dendroid overgrowths upon the sponges, represent microbially precipitated carbonates, so-called microbialites or microbolites (the generic term for stromatolites, thrombolites etc.). Another very abundant element are the bright white, millimeter-sized spots and streaks, representing the sessile miliolid foraminifer Tubiphytes morronensis. This foraminifer is characterized by an unusually thick test which probably formed due to a symbiosis with algae or bacteria.

Another interesting feature is the possibility to distinguish whether a section is cut perpendicular or parallel to bedding planes. The perpendicular section is marked by v-shaped sponges and well visible bedding planes. The parallel sections exhibit circular sponge sections and a more irregular limestone fabric.


See also Fossils at the William T. Young Library (pdf file).

Additional Quick Fact Publications (in pdf):

* Architects: Kallmann McKinnell & Wood Architects, Inc., Boston, in association with Nolan and Nolan, Louisville

* Construction Manager: Lehrer McGovern Bovis, Inc., Princeton, NJ

* The estimated cost of the building is $58 million.

Technology When Young Library Opened

  • OC12 ATM backbone
  • 3,600 network ports
  • 141 miles of data cable
  • 60 miles of voice cable
  • 4,800 data jacks
  • 4,600 voice jacks
  • 50 miles of fiber optic cable
  • hands-free roaming telephone reference service
  • wireless network capability
  • video distribution system
  • 600 personal computers available for patrons and staff

The Book Move

* Approximately 1.2 million books were moved from the Margaret I. King Library South into the William T. Young Library.

* If placed end to end, the book collection of the William T. Young Library would stretch 300 miles, almost from Lexington to Saint Louis.

* 15,000 library cartloads were required to complete the move.

* 750,000 labels were used to reclassify books from the Dewey Decimal System to the Library of Congress Classification System. About 35 people were involved in relabelling nearly 500,000 books and 250,000 journal volumes.

* The University of Kentucky contracted with William B. Meyer Inc. of Stratford, Conn., to move the books. General manager Bill Overton and project manager Al Beinville were the supervisors.

* The company employed more than 90 workers from May 11 until the book move was completed in early August. Additional re-shelving and shifting continued into August.

* The book move required an estimated 34,560 person-hours. If a single worker spent eight hours a day, seven days a week, the job would require nearly 12 years to complete.