General Building Information


Opened in April 2008, the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre provides a welcoming and dynamic teaching and learning environment with classrooms, informal learning spaces and library resources and services. The Learning Centre was made possible by a generous gift from Dr. Irving K. Barber with additional funding provided by UBC and the Province of British Columbia.

For updates on upcoming space improvements, please visit our renovation projects page.

Building Highlights

  • Collection space for 2,100,000 volumes including open stack shelving and 1,800,000 item capacity with the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS)
  • Rare Books and Special Collections Reading Room and climate-controlled vault for rare books and archives
  • The Wallace B. and Madeline H. Chung Collection and exhibition space
  • New locations for:
    • School of Library, Archival, and Information Studies (SLAIS)
    • Center for Teaching, Learning and Technology (CTLT)
    • UBC Gateway Programs – Arts One, Science One, Coordinated Arts and Coordinated Science
  • Community concourse and display space
  • Chapman Learning Commons located in the historical 1925 core
  • Dodson and Lillooet Rooms
  • Variety of informal study areas with over 1,500 study seats
  • 157-seat Victoria Learning Theatre
  • 6 classrooms of various seating capacity, from 40 to 110 seats
  • 5 seminar rooms
  • 21 group study/project rooms
  • A variety of group and silent/quiet study spaces
  • Ike’s Café with 130-seats

Environmentally Sustainable Features

  • Radiant in-slab heating and cooling system
  • High performance triple glazing
  • Displacement ventilation
  • Selected 'healthier' low emitting (or VOC-free) materials for improved indoor environment quality
  • Material selection: Building's demolition materials were collected, sorted and either recycled or reused in the building. For example: the granite from the demolished wings was re-used on the new south-east terrace and on the north (ASRS) façade; The Heritage Core doors, casework and other woodwork items were refinished and reused; Some of the old library shelving was recycled
  • Selected materials that could be recycled at the end of their lifecycle
  • Selected and sourced materials in close proximity as possible to the project helped to reduce the energy required for materials transport (precast, glass, pavers)