Tulane University Libraries recovers from Hurricane Ida

On Sunday, August 29, Hurricane Ida made landfall in South Louisiana. The city of New Orleans, Tulane University, and Tulane University Libraries (TUL) weathered the storm and persevered through the commitment and resilience of its community members.

Once it was safe to return to campus, Andy Corrigan, Associate Dean of Libraries and Chief Collections Officer, soon connected with Campus Services staff to monitor and safeguard the facilities. They found that the buildings fared well in the storm, and that the most significant damage consisted of a broken window in the Learning Commons at Howard-Tilton Memorial Library (HTML). While power was restored to HTML and Jones Hall over the course of September 1 and September 2, BMS CAT, a restoration and reconstruction company, quickly began using large-scale dehumidification equipment to ensure the safety of collections.

Del Hamilton, Manager of the Library Annex, joined Andy to examine the library’s off-site facility, confirming that the area was dry and that the building was receiving the dry-air treatment. The annex experienced some loosened ceiling insulation, minor water stains, and expanded ceiling tiles. Work is underway to repair these damages and protect materials stored there.

Thanks to the dedication of TUL librarians and staff, Howard-Tilton Memorial Library (HTML) reopened on Monday, September 13, 2021 to faculty and graduate students with limited services while online resources, such as email and chat services, remained available. Librarians and staff returned to work on campus on Monday, September 20.  By the time students resumed in-person instruction on Monday, September 27, the library was operating without any interruptions.

dehumidification equipment at Howard-Tilton Memorial Library