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Library Modernization and Renovation Project

In 2024, St. John Fisher University will begin work on a multimillion-dollar library modernization and renovation project, the largest capital project both in scope and investment in the institution’s history. The University plans for the project to be complete by summer 2025. 

Lavery Library opened in 1975 and is named for Fisher’s longest-serving president Rev. Charles J. Lavery, CSB. It has served generations of Fisher students for close to 50 years. 

Following a 2021 comprehensive study of the library space and services by the planning firm Brightspot, Fisher partnered with HOLT Architects, an Ithaca-based firm with expertise in the higher education vertical, whose design was guided by Brightspot’s findings.

Library Design Overview

Renderings of a new building interior with people walking through library spaces.

The design includes bright spaces focused on student success including:

Be sure to view the project timeline and check back for progress updates throughout the renovation.

Library Project Timeline

Renderings of a new library at night surrounded by people, tables with umbrellas, and pavement.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is Lavery Library now?
Campus map with location pin for Lavery Library Under the Steeple.

Where is Lavery Library now?

You can find us at Lavery Under the Steeple in Kearney Hall, Room K050.

K050 is on the ground floor of Kearney Hall, near the Office of Information Technology (OIT) Service Desk. You can enter through the accessible entrance near Wegmans School of Pharmacy or use any of the entrances to Kearney and take the elevator or stairs to the ground floor.

Lavery Under the Steeple
What are the library's hours during the renovation?

What are the library's hours during the renovation?

The library will maintain regular hours during the renovation. View hours.

What services are available during the renovation?

What services are available during the renovation?

Library services will be based in Lavery Under the Steeple in Kearney Hall, ground floor. You can visit us for:

  • Borrowing books and other materials
  • Quiet study space
  • Printing
  • Using a computer
  • Browsing new books
  • Research Help from a librarian
  • Course reserves
  • Interlibrary loan
  • Public faxing and copying
  • Browsing a selection of our K-12 Resource Center materials, including picture books, non-fiction books, chapter books, graphic novels, and more.


Visit Lavery Library’s services page to learn about all the services we will provide throughout the renovation.

Books...can I still borrow them?

Books...can I still borrow them?

Yes, Fisher students, faculty, and staff can still borrow books during the renovation.

You can browse a small part of Lavery Library's collections at Lavery Under the Steeple in Kearney Hall, ground floor. To access the rest of our circulating collection you can use our Request for Pickup option when searching our Big Red Box.

Equipment, such as wireless chargers and iPad accessories, remain available at the Checkout Desk.

Course reserves...does the library still have them?

Course reserves...does the library still have them?

Yes. Course reserve items, including those professors request be placed on reserve for a course and other popular course texts, remain available at Lavery Under the Steeple in Kearney Hall, ground floor.

Faculty with questions regarding course reserve materials or film viewings can contact the Checkout Desk at libaccess@sjf.edu or (585) 385-8165. Visit Lavery Library's Faculty Support page for more information about course reserves.

Librarians and library staff...where can I find them?

Librarians and library staff...where can I find them?

View the temporary locations for Fisher's librarians and staff.

Who's My Librarian? Browse the subject list to find and contact your librarian.

Printers…can I print in the library?

Printers…can I print in the library?

Yes. At Lavery Under the Steeple, you will find:

  • A printer that prints in color and in black & white
  • A touch-screen scanner
Quiet study space…is there still a place for this?

Quiet study space…is there still a place for this?

Yes, we will have a room in Lavery Under the Steeple just for quiet study. You can find the quiet study room in K054.

Other options for quiet study:

  • Victor E. Salerno Center for American Enterprise: Group Break-Out Rooms 120-125

The following classrooms are reserved for weekend and weekday evening quiet study (6-10 p.m.) from 2/19 – 3/8:

  • Basil 118
  • Kearney 317
  • Pioch 123
  • Salerno 210
  • Skalny 008 

Other spots on campus that are prime for studying include:

  • Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. School of Education – couches outside of dean’s suite and seating area on first floor
  • Victor E. Salerno Center for American Enterprise – lobby area booths/chairs
  • Golisano Midlevel Gateway (when not in use)
  • Lobby at entrance to Basil Hall
  • Cyber Café
  • Pioch Café
  • Seating by Health and Wellness Center in the Wegmans School of Nursing
  • Seating on the second floor of the Donald E. Bain Campus Center
Study rooms…where can I go to use them?

Study rooms…where can I go to use them?

We will not have small study rooms in the temporary location available during the renovation.

Here are some other options for study space:

  • Quiet study room at Lavery Under the Steeple, K054. This is a large room with space for about 20 people.
  • Booths, tables, and computers in the open area of Lavery Under the Steeple, K050.

We look forward to offering you many study rooms after the renovation!

Visitors…may outside guests visit Lavery Under the Steeple?

Visitors…may outside guests visit Lavery Under the Steeple?

Due to very limited space, we are unable to offer visitors access to computers or browsable access to most of our collections.

If you are an alumnus looking to use library spaces during our renovation, we recommend calling ahead to determine seating availability or planning your visit for academic breaks. We also recommend other spaces on campus, like the newly renovated Tepas Commons, where you can still access library databases on the guest Wi-Fi

Questions? Contact the Checkout Desk: (585) 385-8165 or libaccess@sjf.edu.

 This is a historic project for the University, one that reimagines an iconic campus building and expands its purpose to provide current and future students with coordinated services and resources. The transformation of the physical space will mirror the supportive culture already established in the Fisher educational experience. ”


Dr. Gerard Rooney