Level 6 – Preservation designed

A collections facility whose primary function is long-term preservation. Provides an excellent enclosure, with multiple layers that block routine hazards, and is designed to reduce calamities. In your action plan, include appropriate elements from previous levels.

Examples

Purpose-designed preservation enclosure; full spectrum of pest-reducing features incorporated such as a refrigerated herbarium collection building, an ethnographic fur storage room, and extensive use of tightly sealed cabinetry for all collections.

Plan B

None

Site

Construction conforms with the need to fully manage for an expected 100-year cycle of weather extremes. Exterior plantings controlled, and sanitary perimeter managed as noted in Level 0, Plan B. Use of food processing plant techniques such as gravel borders on geotextile (engineered fabric underlays that control soil movement) to lower rodent pressure (Imholte ). Exterior wall sheltered under protective eaves as noted in Level 1, Plan B.

Plan B

None

Building

Design clearly based on collection preservation needs. Construction phase requires establishing trust between conservation and construction professionals to discuss these needs when details are decided and executed. A perimeter corridor buffers storerooms from effects of the outside environment better than a single wall. Poured concrete, slab or wall junctions sealed and maintained. Storage areas separated from high human occupancy activities. Floor sweep on interior doors restricts insect movement. Installing pipe and wiring chases minimizes wall perforations. Holes are sealed with appropriate materials that maintain room-to-room quarantine. Built-in vacuum, or portable HEPA vacuum units, are used to control dust. Cabinets throughout the building are tightly sealed. HVAC system system has to be designed to eliminate particulate contaminants and spores if there is significant storage on open shelving. Pest-control facility near loading bay provides quarantine and treatment area including enough room to store travelling exhibit packaging. Cooled food waste and garbage storeroom.

Plan B

Equip HVAC system system up to MERV 13, which eliminates particulate contaminants including dust mite faeces. Plan cool room storage to inhibit insect motion and lower chemical deterioration rate (e.g. rooms kept at 15°C). However, this solution requires careful design, commitment to maintenance, and energy use. Construction project includes strict control of details, such as vapour barriers, due to the high performance expectations for the building's envelope. Structure and contents disinfested before occupation, which requires coordination of pest-control operations when the collection is moved in.

Portable fittings

Light traps positioned to draw insects out from loading bay. Bird curtains or shrouds connected to truck trailers block most pest access when doors are open. Appropriate system (−20 to −30°C freezer, controlled-atmosphere fumigation, heat chamber) for eradicating infestation of new acquisitions.

Plan B

Cabinet integrity protected by an annual inspection and maintenance plan. Near hermetic storage (e.g. film canisters) can be used for most valuable and vulnerable items in long-term storage. All disinfested objects sealed in pest-resistant enclosures, possibly refrigerated, possibly in an altered storage atmosphere. Walk-in storage freezers with back-up power supply used for routine pest control.

Procedure

Structural flaws promptly corrected, crevices caulked. Routine trapping near openings of each room and vulnerable collections databased and mapped for long-term analysis. Annual visual inspection of susceptible collections. Storage areas kept at temperature set primarily for human comfort (which does little to suppress pest growth). Contents are sterilized, sanitized, fumigated, cleaned, and inspected (depending on requirement for long-term storage) before being hermetically sealed or deposited in tight, pest-resistant containers. Bagged, in vials, or boxed artifacts all placed in pest-resistant cabinets. Visual inspections conducted to confirm integrity of seals and absence of pests on an annual basis. For refrigerated storage, all contents are sealed against refrigeration failure and moisture movement. A recovery plan is in place in case of mechanical failure. New staff are trained in IPM policies and methods. Maintain work relationships through an IPM committee and informal connections with the staff who encounter pests (security, maintenance, food services).

Plan B

None.

Prognosis

Few pest issues in storage areas. More found by floor trapping than by inspecting cabinets visually. A few pests found in gallery spaces due to human traffic and food service.

Plan B

Sporadic pest problems, mostly in new collections and on objects returning from loan.

Expected deterioration

Anticipated pest events are minimal over the presumed lifetime of the storage structure for robust to delicate objects. Long-term survival of objects is tied to cultural will to preserve the contents, structural integrity of the building, and energy to support necessary services.

Plan B

None.

CCI Technical Bulletin 29.

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