The Okanagan Regional Library will reopen its 30 branches gradually, as it enters its Phase 3: browse and borrow stage amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (File photo)

COVID-19: Okanagan libraries to reopen for browsing

More than 80,000 items loaned out through curbside pickup program ahead of Phase 3

The doors to the library will once again reopen to members of the public amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Following the Okanagan Regional Library’s (ORL) successful curbside delivery program, which has been in place since early June, library patrons are eager to get back into the stacks and browse the materials once again, CEO Don Nettleton said Thursday, July 2.

The browse and borrow stage, or Phase 3 of the ORL’s reopening, will see limited numbers of patrons to enter the libraries across the Okanagan, browse the collection, use socially-distanced computers and borrow materials “unlike how the library functioned before COVID-19,” the statement reads.

Meeting rooms, spaces, study rooms, public seating and other gathering areas in the library will remain closed to the public for the time being and patrons are encouraged to select materials quickly, check out using the self-checkout and leave quickly to allow for others to enter.

“We know the public is anxious to enter Library space once again, browse their favourite materials and use our computers to access the web and other needed online services,” Nettleton said.

“We ask that when the library opens for our Phase 3 browse and borrow service that visitors follow the outlined processes and rules so that everybody stays healthy and safe.”

Libraries were first closed on March 17 amid growing concerns surrounding the novel coronavirus.

On June 2, ORL branches began offering curbside pickup.

“Over the first couple of weeks, we checked in over 75,000 physical items and re-loaned almost 80,000 new ones,” Nettleton said.

Phase 3 will be implemented gradually across the 30 ORL branches throughout the month of July.

Exact dates and adjusted hours of operation will be posted over the next few weeks as details are finalized. Visit orl.bc.ca for more information.

READ MORE: Curbside reads available as Okanagan libraries reopen

READ MORE: RCMP seek help finding missing Vernon senior


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

87-year-old Salmon Arm woman sinks hole-in-one

The Aug. 12 ace is Helen Bobbitt’s fourth.

Shuswap dragon boaters honour teammate’s cancer-fighting accomplishments

Friends Abreast team provides special recognition outside Salmon Arm hospital

Invasive mussel monitoring stations detect 10 boats

Boats were headed to Okanagan and Thompson regions

Collisions with a barrier, a deer and a tree demand Chase RCMP’s attention

Transport truck shreds tires along concrete barrier on Highway 1 east of Kamloops

Salmon Arm’s first Bitcoin ATM installed in mall

The kiosk will allow people to buy cryptocurrency or sell it for cash.

578 British Columbians currently infected with COVID-19

Seventy-eight new cases confirmed in past 24 hours

Piano set up in Penticton downtown

Initiative an effort to bring music and creativity to the streets

Man who drove into music festival crowd sentenced to 14 months in jail

Several people seriously hurt during event held near Princeton

Conservation seizes fawn illegally kept captive in Vancouver Island home

A Comox Valley resident charged and fined under the Wildlife Act

Vandals put Vernon public piano out of play

Downtown instrument destroyed, but public project is not over

Pandemic could be driving more parents to get on board with flu shot: study

University of B.C. study gauges willingness for parents to vaccinate children for influenza

Summerland mayor asks for community conversation on racism

Incidents in July prompt calls for dialogue

Westside wildfire human caused

Blaze started as a house fire and spread to the bush

Summerland working to reopen recreation facilities

Arena and pool are opening, but ball season will not proceed

Most Read