Keep@Downsview Preservation Partnership Established by five Ontario University Libraries

What is it?

Downsview Keep Storage

Keep@Downsview is a new partnership to share library preservation and storage facilities and services between the University of Toronto, University of Ottawa, Western University, McMaster University and Queen's University. This partnership is part of a larger movement in higher education for universities to collaborate to share resources and costs.

About the facility

The Keep@Downsview partners share a high-density storage and preservation facility that supports long-term preservation and access to scholarly print materials, and is designed to provide a secure environmentally controlled space that is optimal for long-term preservation. The facility uses cost-effective high-density rack storage, and has a capacity for 5 million volumes, with the potential for further expansion. The facility is located at the University of Toronto’s Downsview Campus in North Toronto, which has been in operation since 2005.

What’s in it?

Important but lesser used print journals and books from the five university libraries will be kept at the facility. Locating and requesting materials will be seamless for users at each partner institution, and items will be easily requested from home library catalogues.


By preserving and maintaining these valuable collections, they will be available for generations to come. With demands on space at universities increasing while research collections continue to grow, moving less used but valuable material to the preservation facility will increase space for study, research and collaboration. The partnership and shared facility will create exciting new opportunities for the development of new services and delivery options that will improve access to collections, including on demand digitization and electronic delivery services for journals currently only available in print.

Costs and Funding

The Keep@Downsview’s recent addition to the University of Toronto’s Downsview facility is estimated to cost $10,128,000 and was funded, in part, through the Ministry of Training Colleges and Universities Productivity and Innovation Fund ($2,291,000). Some capital and all operating costs will be shared amongst the five universities.