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While the contract for the Widener Memorial Library has not been let, Architect Horace Traumbaeur has the bids in hand and within a few days the award will be made. As soon as the contract is let the contractor is expected to begin the work. This will include the demolition of the present Gore Hall, the excavation, concrete foundations, stone and brick work, cut stone, fire and damp-proofing, cement, mortar and concrete and structural metal and miscellaneous iron-work, lumber and carpenter work, plaster, painting and glazing, rough hardware, marble and tile work, cement floors and pavements, plumbing, heating and ventilating.
The contractor is required to allow $450,000 for the book stacks, five stair ways from the basement to the upper floors, the partition between the quin-quennial room and the University archives room, the cabinets and bookcases, elevators, lighting fixtures, gas piping, book conveyors, pneumatic tubes, vacuum cleaning system, a leaded glass ceiling in the main reading-room, bronze grilles for windows in the special reading-room and delivery room and a clock in the main reading-room. In demolishing Gore Hall and foundations all the old materials except the bricks and granite are to be the property of the contractor. These are to be used in the new building below grade. All the interior walls except on the light courts, where white brick will be used, are to be of Harvard red brick similar to those used in the Class of '77 gate.
Specifications for Exterior.
Certain work has been omitted from the contract, such as interior wood finish, wall decorations, diffusing sash (which will be used in the vestibule, the first story of the main hall, the Widener Room, Memorial Hall, and the hall in front of the main reading-room). The marble work will also be a special contract. The corridor floor of the second story, the stairs, toilet rooms, and the walls and ceiling of the small side vestibule are to be of Rutland or other approved clear white marble, while all other marble work will be of light pink Tennessee marble. The granite work calls for risers and flat top of the lower portion of the cut stone base around the whole building. The sills of all exterior doors, the entrance steps with landings up to the portico floors, the steps and landing of the rear entrance to the ground story and the base above the pavement level in the light courts are to be constructed of Woodbury, Bothel or other close-grained white, light pink or gray granite. Above this granite foundation the building, on the exterior, will be of limestone and brick. Above the base the columns, band cornices, window sills, keystones, arches, etc., will be of buff Indiana limestone.
Latest Ideas of Library Construction.
In the interior there will be adopted the latest ideas in library construction, cork floors being laid over concrete to doaden the sound. The elevator doors will be of metal and the others of wood. On the first floor there will be telephone booths for the use of patrons of the library, built in as part of the building. It may be said that the specifications for the contract call for the last word in library construction, and Harvard may well feel proud of its million-dollar library made possible through the munificence of Mrs George D. Widener of Philadelphia
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