The Delft Academic Shop (DA-SH) at the Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering will permanently close on 23 December. The shop has run at a loss for a while. Digitalisation and working from home more often after Covid were the shop’s undoing, says staff member Marien van Leeuwen. The four staff members have to find other jobs. Until it closes, the shop is doing a huge sale.
The Delft Academic Press publisher, part of the Vereniging Studie- en Studentenbelangen Delft (study and student advocacy association Delft, VSSD), will also stop at the end of this year. They sold Dutch and English language academic books for technical courses.
The shop in the wind tunnel building, another part of the VSSD, had already closed down. Students could go there to buy books at a discount price from the publisher. For the students union, it means that only the union activities will remain after the closure.
People were disappointed, says Marien van Leeuwen, shop staff member of DA-SH and board member of Delft Academic Press. “People who draw came here to get fineliners and marker pens. I hope the study associations will take over that job.”
‘I hope the study associations will take over that job’
The book shop opened in the space previously occupied by the Waltman bookshop in the summer of 2021. Waltman went bankrupt in February 2020. It was quiet right from the start, says Van Leeuwen. “We took the plunge in the hope that the clientele would return to the pre-Covid levels,” says Van Leeuwen, who also worked at Waltman. “The shop was doing quite well.”
It worked well for IDE, but not outside says Van Leeuwen. “Secretaries at other faculties that previously came to Waltman, had found other places to buy their things.”
She says that the further digitalisation at TU Delft was the final straw. “Previously, students used to buy a lot more physical books at DA-SH, including those from Delft Academic Press. That was where our profits were made.” Van Leeuwen drew the IDE Faculty’s Board’s attention to the dire financial situation, but they could not do anything.
So the shop, after a big sale, will permanently close at 5 p.m. on 23 December. “We will empty the shop between Christmas and New Year,” says Van Leeuwen. “As many of the remaining academic books as possible will go to the faculties.” What will happen with the shop premises is not yet known.
In November, the AKO on the Stieltjesweg had already closed. This leaves Waltman’s Bouwshop at the Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment as the only remaining bookshop on campus.