Due to COVID-19 and putting people and safety first, the library is following a phased plan to reintroduce services and reopen buildings. Read more about library service levels and our plan to reintroduce services and reopen buildings »
The library is now in Service Level 2. This means the Main Library is now open for limited visits, Dole and Maze Branches remain closed, outside book drops are open for returns, and we continue to offer contact-free services if you are not ready to go inside the Main Library.
What to know before you visit the Main Library
Visits look different than they did during pre-COVID-19 times. Before coming to the Main Library during Service Level 2, here’s more to know about visits and how we are working to keep each other safe.
- Main Library building open hours are 10 am-6 pm Mondays-Saturdays.
- The Main Library parking garage will be open, and the gates will be up to avoid any complications entering or exiting.
- Face coverings are required to enter the building.
- Call us when you arrive if you need a mask. (Signs with the phone number to call are posted at each service desk.)
- Main Library total building capacity is set at 120 people; 40 by floor.
- Check the bar at the top of the website and the Main Library vestibule and elevator screens for real-time updates.
- During open hours, staff walkthroughs and periodic audio announcements will be made to share updates to building capacity.
- Gathering spaces are unavailable.
- All tables and chairs have been temporarily removed to encourage visits of 1 hour or less.
- Children’s Services first-floor furniture, toys, and play areas are unavailable.
- Children under the age of 14 must visit the library with an adult.
- All physical meeting and study rooms are unavailable. Check out reserving virtual meeting spaces »
- All library events are virtual. Learn more about our virtual programs for early learners, kids, tweens, teens, and adults »
- Bring your cell phone, wipes, and hand sanitizer.
- Library staff will be working inside the building but not available at public service desks. Visitors may call for safe, physically distanced assistance if needed.
- We will have disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer available, but it is always a good idea to have your own should supplies be running low.
What you can do now
Access physical collections (including new books and Hot Picks) at the Main Library only
- No self-checkout stations will be available in the lobby; use the self-checkout stations in Children’s Services (floor 1) and those on floors 2 and 3.
- Please put anything you pull from the shelves but choose not to check out into specially marked boxes on each floor. We will quarantine those items for up to 3 days.
- Wondering where the 3 days came from? Learn more »
- For Oak Park cardholders only, holds pickup will continue outside only as a contact-free process.
- After August 12, Oak Park cardholders can place holds on material from other SWAN libraries and submit interlibrary loan requests.
- No physical newspapers will be available. Search digital newspapers »
- Physical magazines (including current issues) will be available for checkout. To browse available physical options, search the catalog. You can also place issues on hold and use contact-free holds pickup with magazines.
- See what you can read digitally through PressReader and Flipster.
Return items at the Main Library & at curbside book drops
- At the Main Library, you can return materials contact-free outside the main entrance and in the vestibule and lobby when the building is open (Mondays-Saturdays, 10 am-6 pm).
- Before they are checked in, all returned items are quarantined for at least 3 days.
- This means it will take longer than normal for your account to reflect the updated status of your returned items.
- The library’s Facilities Team makes multiple trips each day to empty all five book drops, then boxes those items for quarantine. Our goal is to get items back into circulation as safely and as quickly as possible!
- Wondering where the 3 days came from? Unlike retail stores and restaurants that can offer more one-way transactions, including pickup and delivery, libraries circulate items between many people. This poses a different health risk to staff and the public, both when they are handled and returned. This most recent research shows that the virus is undetectable on five highly circulated library materials after three days, which is why we are quarantining returned items for at least three days. Learn more »
- Curbside returns/book drops are now open:
- In Village of Oak Park Parking Lot 55 (at North Boulevard between Kenilworth and Oak Park avenues). See on Google Maps »
- At Maze Branch (two book drops) on Gunderson Avenue.
- At Dole Branch on Augusta Street.
- Please note: You will be responsible for items left outside book drops. If drops are full, please do not leave items next to or on top of the drop. Thank you!
Only Oak Park cardholders can use computers by appointment
- Only Oak Park cardholders can call 708.697.6943 to schedule a 45-minute desktop computer session.
- Everyone can use Main Library third-floor self-service print, scan, and fax capabilities.
- Children’s first-floor computers are unavailable.