Storage expansion ideas

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    • #133286
      Brandy T.

      Hello, all–

      I posted a message on a couple of museum listservs regarding storage space (you may have seen it), and I wanted to run it by you all, too.

      We are considering ways to create more space in our curation facility. Currently, the conversation is about building a new building, or renovating our existing building; however, I want to be sure we consider all of our options before spending any money.

      So, my topic for discussion is: have you ever had to deal with this issue, and if so, what did your organization do?

      Thanks for any input!

    • #133292
      Michael Hosking

      Hi Brandy,
      It depends on how you are currently storing your collection, dimensions of you storage area, and are you willing to change your storage methodology. We have a consolidated storage area in the Washington D. C. area and they love a tier rack ( They are flexible and stackable to as high as you are comfortable or you can go. The other thing I have seen with an storage area in a warehouse space with high ceilings at Yosemite National Park is a steel platform (website is an example of what I am talking about: They were able to place wardrobe cabinets on the concrete floor as well as on this platform, and the company they went through also built them an elevator to access the second level with heavy objects. The last option I have seen used at Badlands National park is compactor storage. This can be designed to fit your current cabinets and expand your existing floor space.

      We are currently looking at retrofitting a historic structure but are fighting an uphill battle with budget issues. With the way funding is for cultural institutions, I would personally retrofit the current structure if you can, it is cheaper and if there is nothing wrong with the old storage location there are many creative ways of expanding space.

      Hope this helps

    • #133291
      Ben Shaw

      Hey Brandy,
      The museum that I work for got a federal grant that matched funds, so we were able to build a new building. We are using a system called spacesaver ( know that it is a Canadian company, but there has to be an American equivilant. I have seen several cheaper versions of spacesaver systems, but if you are going with a system that is on wheels as oposed to in a track, make sure you have solid wheels, and not air filled. If you have air filled the tires will not be able to sustain the weight that you are going to load onto them.

      I would suggest checking out a system that can be installed in your current storage loacation. An issue that comes up from that, however, is where do you put the artifacts for the retrofit.

      hope that helps.


    • #133290

      Ben, which federal grant did you get for building? Most I have seen won’t do bricks and mortar?

    • #133289
      Brandy T.

      These are wonderful ideas–just what I was hoping for! Much appreciated, Michael and Ben.

    • #133288
      Ben Shaw

      Hey Linda, I work for a medium size museum in Ontario Canada. In 2009-2010 the Canadian Government had a series of grants that were targeting creating jobs. The program has ended now. We were lucky to have been able to have taken advantage.

      And Brandy, glad to help out.


    • #133287
      Jack Wallace

      I believe I provided a budget in 2007 for a Spacesaver High-Density storage system in your building through an architect local to Columbia. I am Jack Wallace of Peterson Group, the area contractor for Spacesaver and Delta Museum storage products (Same proeducts used by Ben Shaw). Spacesaver is headquartered in Fort Atkinson, WI. We (Peterson Group) are in St. Louis and service eastern 2/3 of Missouri and Southern Illinois. Contact me or 636.343.2343. Also see Spacedsaver’s site
      Would like to connect to help.

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