Moffitt Library

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Moffitt Library at UC Berkeley
Moffitt Library

Coordinates: 37°52′20.95″N 122°15′38.78″W / 37.8724861°N 122.2607722°W / 37.8724861; -122.2607722Moffitt Library, designed by John Carl Warnecke[1] in the late 1960s as a cutting-edge library for undergraduates, sits at the crossroads of the University of California, Berkeley. Named after James K. Moffitt, a regent of the University of California,[2] the library has been a popular destination for students for over four decades. Campus and curriculum changes in the time since Moffitt Library opened have been a catalyst for considering new purposes for this highly trafficked space. Accommodating increased undergraduate enrollments, greater focus on problem-based and research-based learning, and demand for access to technology-rich spaces have all been taken into account as part of the re-imagination of this library.

The University Library began re-envisioning Moffitt Library with the renovation of floors 4 and 5 in 2016,[3] transforming them into a flexible, 24 hour environment for individual and group study. The renovated floors provide a variety of spaces including open casual seating, meeting rooms for brainstorming and group projects, and nooks and carrels for quiet study.[4] Updates also included improvements to critical building systems, life-safety features, and have created a foundation for further renovations of the library.

The Newspaper Display Wall is located outside the 3rd floor south entrance, where visitors can read the daily front page of various international newspapers.

Wellness Room[edit]

Moffitt Library UC Berkeley Wellness Room
Wellness Room

Understanding that current students' days are long and there aren't always opportunities to take breaks during the day, a quiet room was created on the 5th floor of Moffitt Library. The dimmed space has lounge chairs for short naps and space for meditation, prayer or silent thought. In partnership with the Associated Students of the University of California and the Student Wellness Fee, the REST Zone provides a place for students to de-stress.

Van Houten Presentation Studio and Conference Studio[edit]

Van Houten Presentation Studio in Moffitt Library at UC Berkeley
Van Houten Presentation Studio

Providing students a space for practicing public speaking, the Van Houten Presentation Studio has equipment to easily allow students to record themselves individually or in groups. The Conference Studio has a camera and display for web conferencing, designed to allow students to be able to connect with experts around the world. The technology in both 4th floor rooms was made possible through the UC Berkeley Student Technology Fund.


Launching in Fall 2016, the University Library, Educational Technology Services and Student Affairs Information Technology partnered with b.makerspace, a collective of design oriented student groups through the College of Engineering, to create an entry level makerspace on the 1st floor of Moffitt Library. The concept extends to the residence halls through workshops and equipment offered in the Academic Centers. Technologies being explored include 3D printing, unmanned aerial vehicles (drones), virtual reality and robotics.

Free Speech Movement Cafe[edit]

Free Speech Movement Cafe

Based on a major donation by university alumnus Stephen M. Silberstein,[5] the university established the Free Speech Movement Cafe on the 3rd floor of Moffitt Library.[6] The Free Speech Movement Cafe commemorates the campus protests in the 1960s. A reproduction of what may be considered the most recognizable and iconic photograph that captured the movement, a shot of the key demonstration march where suit-clad students carry the Free Speech banner through the university's Sather Gate in fall 1962,[7] stands now at the entrance to the cafe. The Silberstein gift also helped to underwrite the Free Speech Movement Digital Archive.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ University of California (System) (1964). University Bulletin: A Weekly Bulletin for the Staff of the University of California. Office of Official Publications, University of California.
  2. ^ University of California (System) (1943). Register - 1942-1943. University of California Press. p. 8 – via Google Books.
  3. ^ Kell, Gretchen (2016-11-01). "Reimagined and revitalized Moffitt Library opens Wednesday". Berkeley News. Retrieved 2016-12-05.
  4. ^ Eshaghian, Kiya (2016-11-03). "Tour of redesigned 4th, 5th floors of Moffitt Library". The Daily Californian. Retrieved 2016-12-05.
  5. ^ Rodríguez, José (2000-02-02). "UC Berkeley's new Free Speech Movement Café, honoring 1964 struggle, to be dedicated Thursday". Retrieved 2016-12-05.
  6. ^ Mena, Jesús; Rodriguez, José (1998-04-29). "UC Berkeley to honor Mario Savio, Free Speech Movement with library gift, café". Retrieved 2016-01-15.
  7. ^ "Sather Gate".

External links[edit]