NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC – New Hanover County Public Libraries will begin phasing in more services, including time-limited computer use and quick visits to browse and check-out books, in addition to continued online and curbside services, beginning Monday, August 17. All four branches will be closed Saturday, August 15 and Sunday, August 16, to prepare and will reopen with expanded services Monday.
Library services that will be available include browsing and check-out, picking up holds, 60-minute computer sessions and curbside pick-up services. Modifications will be in place to slow the spread of COVID-19, including sanitation stations throughout the buildings, social distancing markers, no seating except for the computer stations, and no meeting room access. The libraries will follow state orders, with everyone expected to wear a mask and will only allow up to 50 percent capacity.
Interactive play items will not be available in children’s rooms and Story Places and Makerspaces will be closed. Storytimes will continue online.
“As our libraries reopen, things will be different, but we’ve found ways to increase the service delivery while maintaining safety precautions to slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect our patrons and staff,” said New Hanover County Library Director Paige Owens. “Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic our team has been extremely innovative to continue to bring Library services to residents and patrons online and through curbside services, and those services will remain available. And for those who wish to come into the library, we encourage you to plan your visit in advance so you’re ready to make your selection when you get to the library.”
Starting Monday, New Hanover County Libraries will be open and live chat will be available on the Library’s website Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Fridays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Residents are encouraged to continue utilizing the library’s curbside and online services, which offer added value for all library card holders. Limited staff assistance will be available in person, and patrons will be encouraged to utilize self-checkout stations. Returns will continue to only be accepted in the outside book drop, with staff continuing the 72-hour quarantine of all returned books.
ONLINE & CURBSIDE SERVICES
The Library will continue to waive fines for overdue materials until further notice, and new patrons may register for a card online and request materials immediately.