The University of Nebraska at Omaha teamed up with KANEKO to create a resource rich place for students to study in the Old Market.
The KANEKO complexes are located at the intersection of 12th and Jones St. with the KANEKO Library being one of the few completed areas.
Student worker Norma Castro has worked at the library for a year and believes this close tie to KANEKO is one of the unique resources of the library for students.
“You should also go see the things KANEKO has to offer,” Castro said. “Just because I think UNO has such an awesome partnership with KANEKO.”
The library is right next to the heart of the best the Old Market has to offer. Restaurants, bars, and coffee shops are all within a few blocks as well as the KANEKO performances and events. This includes the upcoming gallery showing of “Passion & Obsession: From the Collection” for the fall exhibit.
This connection with Omaha’s art scene has influenced the library itself. A survey done by library patrons revealed that one of the biggest draws to the KANEKO Library was the space “having natural lighting,” according to Castro. This survey of what visitors wanted most also influenced the library to change their hours to 10 a.m. through 5 p.m. on weekdays in order to add Saturday hours of 11 a.m. through 4 p.m.
Most of the library’s visitors are regulars who either work or live in the downtown area. KANEKO Library has a welcoming air with open spaces. Patrons can be found with headphones on while eating and drinking as they utilize the library’s abundant resources and free Wi-Fi. One of these unique resources is daily coffee provided by Aromas Coffeehouse. The shelves also boast hard to find books on architecture and philosophy, as well as art and design periodicals.
The staff is small and is made up of only Castro and her manager Melinda Kozel. They help with any questions as well as the technology in the library such as the six computer banks, turntable and movie collection.
While both Kozel and Castro have characterized the library as being a very quiet place to study, Kozel also described it as “a great place to bring study groups or hold meetings.”
Students that do utilize the KANEKO Library have the same privileges that are offered to them at Criss Library. KANEKO books are not offered through the Interlibrary Loan but can be picked up and dropped off at Criss Library as well as at KANEKO. The scanning, copying and printing options available are the same as the ones in the on-campus library.
Community programs and events are also offered at the KANEKO Library as well as off-campus class instruction.
Despite the distance from the University of Nebraska campuses, book checkouts have increased for the KANEKO Library. It boasts regulars and patrons who frequent the library but is always looking to attract new UNO students.
Resource, event and contact information for the UNO-KAKEKO Library can be found on their website: http://library.unomaha.edu/kaneko/