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Explore the spaces

Floor 1


The courtyard is an accessible and flexible green space for all visitors to enjoy. It includes a curved paved walkway through a woodland garden. An enclosed porch area provides three-season community space. The space includes a wall of accordion doors that can open to the outdoors. It also has a perforated screen that creates shadows that look like sunlight coming through the tree canopy. Photo credit: John Horner.


Central staircase and pavilions

The first floor has two new double-height pavilion structures.” They are clad in translucent glass and ash wood, and are in an X-shaped configuration. The pavilions illustrate the architects’ design concept of “Research Crossroads.” They open up views to both the courtyard and the Charles River. A new central stair and expanded elevator make the library’s many spaces more visible and accessible to visitors. These better connect the 1st floor to the mezzanine level and the 2nd floor. Photo credit: John Horner.


The Nexus

A space for community events and teaching, the room is set up with sound and projection and can also be a study space. It has a retractable wall that can be raised to expand into the reading room. The furniture can also be arranged in many ways for different types of events ranging from lectures to workshops to hackathons. Photo credit: John Horner.


Courtyard Cafe















The new Courtyard Cafe is one of the MIT community’s most requested improvements. It will be open Monday – Friday, 10am – 6pm. The Cafe provides coffee and other drinks, sandwiches, and treats. It features an open seating area overlooking the renovated courtyard. Photo credit: John Horner.


Collaborative reading room

The 1st floor is an area for conversation and collaboration. It features curated library collections and offers flexible seating areas, whiteboards, and help from library experts. This space is available 24/7 for current faculty, students, and staff. Photo credit: John Horner.

Floor 1M

Group study rooms (1 and 1M)

Available to the community are eight new rooms designed for small group collaborative work. Each room has translucent and transparent glass walls as well as large wall-mounted monitors. The rooms can be reserved online.

The Loft

The Loft overlooks the reading room and cafe seating area. The Loft features a display case for Distinctive Collections exhibits. It also has collaborative space for classes or study groups.

Floor 2

Quiet reading room

The 2nd floor reading room is envisioned as a quiet zone. The reading room takes advantage of Hayden’s best asset: views of the Boston skyline and the Charles River. The windows now have high-performance, energy-efficient glass. Photo credit: John Horner.


Consultation suite

Make an appointment to meet here (or virtually) with one of our library experts. Find out how they can help with specific subjects, scholarly publishing, data management, and more.


The Oasis

Next to the 2nd floor reading room is the Oasis. The Oasis is a zone for contemplation, meditation, or taking a break. The community is invited to unplug and separate from their studies. Visitors can enjoy comfortable seating and quiet in this minimal technology space.


East study room

The east wing of the building provides new space for the community’s use. This flexible study room also has a research alcove for using library collections. Lockers are available for long-term use of materials. The space is open to current faculty, students, and staff.