VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — The Vancouver Public Library is reopening five branches to meet increased demand, after they closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Kerrisdale, Marpole, Mount Pleasant, Terry Salman, and West Point Grey branches will reopen Sept. 8, with limited services.
The library was offering takeout service and will work towards providing limited in-person services at most locations by the end of the month.
“We’ve heard from many of our patrons just how much they miss their neighbourhood libraries,” says Christina de Castell, chief librarian. “Meeting our communities’ needs during this time of uncertainty is our priority, and we’re looking forward to safely restoring library services to all neighborhoods across the city.”
Since takeout service and limited openings started, de Castell said almost 200,000 items have been borrowed by patrons.
“While use of our digital collections has grown tremendously, we know that physical books are still important throughout Vancouver.”
VPL will also be increasing the hours of its central location, opening Mondays starting Sept. 14.
The book-drop hours on Hamilton St. will expand to seven days a week. Loan periods have been extended to seven weeks, while VPL still isn’t collecting fines, for the time being.
As public health guidelines evolve, the library will explore safe ways to offer in-person programming and limited seating, which are currently suspended, says a release.
The library continues to offer online programs and events, while expanding its digital collection of ebooks, movies, music, and online courses.
Last year, the Vancouver Public Library had more than 6.4 million visits, with patrons borrowing more than 9.8 million items.
For more information, visit on VPL’s reopening plans, visit vpl.ca/reopening.