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British Library opens automated storage space

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The British Library has officially opened its new £26M Additional Storage Building (ASB) at Boston Spa, Yorkshire.

Housed within a large steel frame, which required 800t of structural steelwork and was erected by James Killelea, there are 262 linear kilometers of shelf space for the national collection.

The project, managed by Capita Symonds, is the first of its kind to incorporate automated storage and retrieval systems, optimum environmental controls and low oxygen fire prevention technology in a single building.

The ASB, constructed by Allenbuild, is also one of the most air-tight buildings in the UK, with a leakage rate specification of no more than 0.5m³ of air per sq m of wall area per hour.

It will house low-use material including patent specifications, books and newspapers in 144,000 storage containers.

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