Surrey Campus Library Soft Launches New Food and Noise Rules

(Tommy Nguyen)

Green means go, red means silence!
Kyrsten Downton, Contributor

(Tommy Nguyen)

This summer, KPU will be soft launching new rules regarding food and noise levels in the Surrey campus library. The new system will divide the library into three separate zones.

Todd Mundle, the KPU University Librarian, says that the idea for the new rules came from feedback from student surveys for the library.

“We are finally meeting the feedback that we have been getting for a number of years,” he says. “Students use the library for many different reasons, so we need to acknowledge that fact.”

As of right now, the Surrey campus library is the only KPU library  to begin implementing the rules. Mundle explains that Surrey’s library is ideal for introducing the zoning system because of its larger size.

“It is the best and worst place,” says Mundle. “We’ve got the ability to zone various places without a lot of interaction between those three zones. The worst of it is that we have such a big space, so it will be difficult to monitor.”

The three-zone colour code was designed to be similar to a traffic light. The green zone will cover half of the first floor, designating the area where students can go when they need a collaborative space to socialize with their peers at a respective sound level.

The yellow zone is the quiet space, where students can talk to their peers at a hushed level. It will be located in the computer areas and on the entirety of the second floor.

The red zone is the silence space, which will be located on the third floor. Mundle says this area will most likely be the easiest to manage.

“It is very well policed by the students themselves,” he says. “They handle it rather than us needing to do it. From time to time they may need our help but for the most part it is very well managed.”

In tandem with the colour-coded sound regulations, the library will also be implementing new food and drink rules. The student surveys which the library conducted contained many complaints regarding smelly foods which were found to be distracting. Mundle explains that the garbage system in the library is not adequate enough for it’s size, but they are working to change that.

“We are going to restrict food into what we call the soft seating area just right outside the checkout area. People with covered drinks can certainly take them to other zones but we are trying to corral the food into this one spot,” says Mundle.

The new library rules will be in full effect on the Surrey campus library beginning with the fall semester. Students at the Richmond, Cloverdale, and Langley campuses can also expect similar rules at their libraries in the future.

To help students adjust to the change, better signage of the zones will be put up. The library will also be handing out bookmarks to students to remind them of the rules.

“We want to help students understand where in the library they can act in certain ways,” says Mundle. “Before, you had no idea. We are going to help to steer them into the spaces where they can go to do the activities they want to do without it being a free for all.”