The San Francisco Main Public Library will reopen on May 3, more than a year after The City closed its libraries to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Mayor London Breed announced the reopening date on Tuesday. The San Francisco Examiner previously reported that the San Francisco Library plans to open this spring but has not yet selected a date.
“I know people really missed the library, and while we’ve adjusted to provide more take-out options and online resources, there’s nothing like browsing the shelves and choosing your next book,” said Breed in one statement.
The indoor service of the main library will initially be limited to the first floor. The Chinatown Branch Library and Mission Branch Library will reopen the week of May 17th.
Supervisor Matt Haney celebrated the news.
“Libraries are so important to all of our residents,” he wrote on Twitter. “The main library provides critical access to my constituents who otherwise have no access to technology. Mission Bay Branch is a vibrant community resource, especially for families. “
With the restricted indoor service “Browse and Bounce”, users can search through library books on the shelves as well as music and films. Self-check-out machines will be available.
Users can use computers and print materials for a limited time of 50 minutes. The staff are available for questions. People can get help getting library cards.
The 28 library locations were closed in March 2020 and hundreds of library staff were hired to help The City respond to the pandemic.
In the fall, the locations began offering roadside pickup and drop-off services known as SFPL To-G0. This service is currently operated in 15 locations including the main library and will continue alongside the limited indoor service.
The main library is open Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. and on Sundays from 12 p.m. to 5.30 p.m.
The Chinatown Branch Library will reopen for indoor service on May 17th and will be open Monday through Friday from 10am to 5.30pm
The Mission Bay Branch Library will reopen May 18 and will be open Tuesday through Saturday from 10am to 5.30pm
According to a phone and email survey of 587 residents that FM3 conducted for the nonprofit Friends of the San Francisco Public Library, the library’s branches are likely to have some activity.
75 percent said they would “feel safe coming to the library after it reopened,” and 60 percent of those on less than $ 100,000 “are looking for expanded access to free WiFi” .
95 percent of respondents viewed libraries as an essential service like parks, hospitals, and schools.
A schedule for reopening other branches was not provided. But the Michael Lambert City Library said in an April 12 memo that they intend to reopen other branches by the summer, including the Excelsior Branch Library, Visitacion Valley, Richmond and Ortega.
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