McGill Recommendations, Student Life

So long, McLennan!

As some library-goers may be aware, the Redpath-McLennan Complex will be under renovations for an estimated three years as of early 2024, as part of McGill’s Fiat Lux Library Project. The closure of the university’s largest library complex will change the study routines of many McGill students. Fear not, though! The Tribune has compiled a list of alternative study spaces across the downtown campus for those in search of a new favourite. 

Schulich Library of Physical Sciences, Life Sciences, and Engineering

Space type: Quiet and group study

Noise level: Moderate

In terms of capacity and hours, the six-floor Schulich complex will be your closest match to McLennan throughout the construction. Much of the interior walls are exposed brick that section each floor into a variety of study areas with desk arrangements to suit your mood and study style, while broad half-round windows provide generous natural light. For those feeling hungry, plenty of dining options are available within a few minutes’ walk, including the RVC dining hall, Mezze Café, and Dispatch Coffee

Address: 809 Sherbrooke Street West

Hours: 8:30 a.m.-midnight (open 24 hours over exam season)

Marvin Duchow Music Library

Space type: Quiet study

Noise level: Quiet

The Marvin Duchow Music Library occupies the third through fifth floors of the Elizabeth Wirth Music Building. Carrels, study tables, and couches line the perimeters of the three floors, providing lively views of Sherbrooke below for mid-work people-watching. One distinctive feature of the Marvin Duchow Music Library is its proximity to the Sherbrooke Starbucks.

Address: Elizabeth Wirth Music Building, 527 Sherbrooke Street West

Hours: 8:30 a.m.-9 p.m. (Monday-Thursday), 8:30-6 p.m. (Friday), 10 a.m.-6 p.m. (Saturday), 11 a.m.-7 p.m. (Sunday)

Nahum Gelber Law Library

Space type: Quiet study

Noise level: Low

A short uphill walk from the heart of campus, the Nahum Gelber Law Library is on the quieter side, making it the ideal spot for independent study. A dimmer library, one of its most charming and distinguishing features is the arched desk lamps on each sleek wooden desk. If the five floors of both desks and tables are not quite quiet enough for your study style, the Law Library has two soundproof pods on the second floor that are available first come, first serve.

Address: 3660 Peel Street

Hours: 9 a.m.-midnight, (open 24 hours over exam season)

688 Sherbrooke Ninth Floor Study Space

Space type: Quiet study

Noise level: Quiet to moderate

Situated on the ninth floor of 688 Sherbrooke, this study space is clean and spacious, lending itself to hours of deep, productive work. With plenty of natural light, outlets, and cushioned office chairs, the environment is both bright and well-equipped to finish that pesky assignment that’s been glaring at you. The defining feature of this study space is the row of desks overlooking campus, which encourages individual work. 

Address: 9th floor, Academic Personnel Office, 688 Sherbrooke St. West

Hours: 7 a.m.-11 p.m. (Monday-Friday), 8 a.m.-6 p.m. (Saturday)

Geographic Information Centre (GIC)

Space type: Group study

Noise level: Moderate to loud

Students looking for more of a chatty workspace can find a home in the GIC. This fifth-floor study space is bright and airy, and is scattered with various indoor plants for that much-needed mood boost. Restaurant-style booths allow larger groups to cozy in shoulder-to-shoulder, while high-tops provide smaller groups a place to collaborate. There are also 75 desktop computers in the GIC for students’ use. 

Address: 5th floor, Burnside Hall, 805 Sherbrooke Street West

Hours: 8:30 a.m.-9 p.m. (Monday-Friday)

Islamic Studies Library

Space type: Quiet study

Noise level: Very quiet

An incredibly quiet library situated adjacent to Redpath Library in Morrice Hall, the Islamic Studies Library is one like no other. The highlight of this library is the Octagon Room, where laden bookshelves and stained glass windows surround the 16 study desks and a round central table. Studies have shown that working in high-ceilinged spaces has benefits for creativity and abstract thinking, making the Islamic Studies Library the perfect spot to brainstorm for that final term paper. Outlets are few and far between in this grand study environment, so come fully charged, or be prepared to stick to pen and paper.

Address: Morrice Hall, 859 Sherbrooke Street West

Hours: 9 a.m.-9 p.m. (Monday-Friday), 10 a.m.-6 p.m. (Sunday)

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