Facility Management

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This content is excerpted from Preventive Conservation: Collection Storage (2019), Elkin and Norris, eds.

Chapter 15: Facility Management for Collections Preservation

Jeff Joplin, Denver Museum of Nature and Science, Denver, CO

The daily requirements of facility management for collections preservation require a coordinated working relationship between staff concerned with collections (conservators, registrars, collection managers, curators) and staff concerned with maintaining the facility’s structure and systems (facility managers, engineers and operations staff). Topics such as building codes, risk management, collection storage requirements, financial and budgetary constraints, emergency preparedness and operational tasks need to be clearly understood with common expectations. From these expectations, role, responsibilities and the rules for engagement are developed within the organization. Building systems including fire protection, heating, ventilation and cooling, building envelope and plumbing and building practices of pest management, janitorial and security should be considered as critical aspects of daily operations. Best practices, metrics and key performance indicators should be developed to fairly evaluate performance and initiate improvements. Deferred maintenance and capital expenditures need to be understood to maintain the operations of the building and collections environment regardless of the building age or type. Each of these components must be held in balance with one another to ensure success of the facility management system.


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