The College of Charleston’s Marlene and Nathan Addlestone Library is undergoing a major improvement project during summer 2014.

RELATED: Read more about the improvement project.

The library renovation will increase study space for students and shelving for collections, but with nearly a million moving pieces, the project is a lot like a jigsaw puzzle.

Library Books in Rotunda

Boxed books have sat in the Library’s rotunda since spring break

1.    There are a lot of pieces.

The Addlestone Library has 750,000 print materials that need to be moved. To put that in perspective, the world’s largest puzzle only has 24,000 pieces.

2.    The piece either fits, or it doesn’t.

All of Addlestone Library’s print materials will be boxed and moved somewhere within the library, then put back in the precise order – a lot like how each puzzle piece only fits in one place.

3.    A degree in engineering is helpful.

All of the books will remain inside the library during the improvement project for security and to prevent damage. Library employees had to figure out how to make that happen – and it’s not as simple as just stacking boxes of books.

Staff figured out the best order for the books to be boxed, each shelf was measured (there are 12,000), the number of books on the self calculated, and a plan created for where the books can sit during the renovation. A structural engineer came in to identify how many boxes could be stacked in each area of the building.

4.    It is very difficult to find the one piece you’re looking for.

Don’t you hate it when you can’t find the one puzzle piece you need?

That’s the feeling when you drop your cell phone over a railing and onto the floor below, into one of hundreds of boxes of books. That happened.

Books are being stored in the Addlestone Library’s rotunda and a student dropped his phone from the second floor into the sea of boxes. It took multiple employees, including one acting as spiderman, to retrieve it.

5.    It’s not a job for amateurs.

Because moving a library is so painstaking, there are professional moving companies who specialize in libraries. One of those companies will be helping the College of Charleston.

RELATED: The American Library Association offers some guidance.

But, it is the College’s librarians who know to leave extra room when reshelving the history collection, because that collection grows faster than, say, biology.

While the College renovates Addlestone Library, why don’t you tackle that 24,000-piece puzzle?