Addison Public Library begins curbside pickup, computer access June 8
After closing its doors on March 15 in response to the COVID-19 crisis, the Addison Public Library has worked hard to offer as many services as possible remotely, including increasing its collection of downloadable eBooks and other digital materials, opening phone lines and live chat remotely, and even offering virtual programming.
Now that the DuPage County area is in Phase 3 of the Restore Illinois plan, the library will officially begin reopening in stages, starting with curbside service and computer use appointments starting June 8.
The library opened the building up to staff June 1 to give staff time to finish preparing socially-distanced workspaces and learning new safety procedures before opening up limited services on June 8.
Director Mary Medjo Me Zengue said the board supported delaying opening until library staff had enough personal protective equipment to protect the health and safety of both staff and patrons, and that the library has been working with community partners to create procedures to reopen these initial services safely.
"Everyone's safety is our top priority, and our board of trustees wanted to make sure we were prepared on all fronts to move forward with a partial reopening," said Medjo Me Zengue. "Staff have been working hard to get the building ready to offer services to the public, and we are so grateful to have had the Board's support during these last few months while we've adapted to all the changes COVID-19 has made to our way of life."
Starting June 8, the library will be answering phones and offering curbside holds pick-up and computer appointments for adults from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Thursday; 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday; and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday.
The library's curbside service will work as follows: After placing holds through the library's online catalog or by calling the library, patrons will receive a notification when their items are ready for pick-up. Patrons should call (630) 543-3617 at least one hour before they intend to arrive at the library so staff can make sure their items are ready. When patrons arrive, they will park in a designated spot and will text the library to notify staff that they are at the building.
The library knows the community will likely be excited to take advantage of curbside holds pick-up, but wants to remind cardholders that the first few weeks of being partially reopened will be a busy time.
"With the high number of holds that will need to be processed and the number of items that will be waiting to be checked in after being quarantined for staff safety, we're expecting to have a lot of work to be done," said Head of Guest Services Jenny Cuevas. "We're going to be working as fast as possible to get your holds ready for curbside pick-up and getting your library accounts updated after you return items, so we appreciate the community's patience."
As of June 8, the only in-building service the library will offer is computer use, scanning, faxing, and printing, which is available by appointment only. Staff have created a temporary computer lab in the large meeting room so that social distancing can be practiced. Sessions will be available for up to 75 minutes, and are only available for adults at this time. Staff will be available at a distanced work station to provide verbal help and virtual computer assistance while in the temporary computer lab. Anyone entering the building for their computer use appointment will be expected to wear a mask and practice social distancing.
"We appreciate the community's cooperation with social distancing and mask-wearing so that we can offer computer use as safely as possible for everyone involved," said Head of IT Yabin Liu, who has been developing the temporary computer lab. "We know that many people in the community rely on public computers, so we have worked to find a way to make it possible in the first stage of the library's reopening."
Patrons may also submit their print jobs to the library from home and pick up their print jobs as part of curbside service. The library board has approved 20 pages of free printing per patron while the building is open in a limited capacity. Additionally, the library will be offering free 3D printing: up to 2 free (3 hour or less) 3D print jobs per month per patron, for curbside pick-up as well. More information on printing pick-up and computer use appointments will be available on the library's website before the June 8 launch.
As the state of Illinois moves into future stages of the Restore Illinois plan, the library will also gradually transition back to more in-person services. The library will announce reopened services as they become available.
"We are excited to be able to get back to offering some of our services to the community. We have missed everyone so much, and we know a lot of people in Addison have been missing us, too," said Medjo Me Zengue. "Rest assured that we are doing everything we can to balance serving the community while also following public health guidelines, and we'll share information about the next steps in our reopening plan as soon as they're ready."
The next step in the library's reopening plan is to offer contactless home delivery tentatively starting June 15 on a first-come, first-served basis to residents of incorporated and unincorporated Addison with an Addison Public Library card. Kathy Welko, Head of Community Engagement, explained that delivery will be limited to 10 items and that items will be delivered on a staggered schedule in order to make sure the library can fill as many requests as possible while keeping staff safe.
"We encourage you, if you are able to do so, to use curbside service so that we can offer home delivery to those who need it most," said Welko.
More information on contactless home delivery will be available on the library's website ahead of the June 15 launch date.
Cardholders can still access all of the library's online offerings, such as downloading eBooks and accessing online learning platforms, at any time. Social services are also available remotely. For information on the library's virtual offerings, visit addisonlibrary.org/from-home.
Library cardholders are also encouraged to check addisonlibrary.org/COVID-19 for the most up-to-date information on the library's reopening plan and available services.