Submitted by Pierce County Library System
Starting today, June 8, the Pierce County Library System is reopening Graham and Steilacoom Pierce County Libraries and tomorrow, June 9, it will open Milton/Edgewood Pierce County Library. The libraries will open with some in-building services, for the first time since it closed buildings more than a year ago to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.
At these pilot locations, people may come into the buildings to browse bookshelves, check out books and movies and access technology.
“We are thrilled to welcome people safely back inside library buildings,” said Pierce County Library Executive Director Georgia Lomax. “We know people have been eager to visit their libraries and search for and discover books and movies on their own. We took time to consider and create the best possible experience – to ensure the public and staff members are safe.”
In addition to checking out books, movies, magazines and other materials, people may also use computers, printers and Wi-Fi, as well as scan, copy and fax a limited number of pages free. Seating is limited and is mostly for people to use technology services, such as computers.
To continue to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, library buildings will continue to be closed for some services, including study rooms, conference rooms and meeting rooms and the Library System continues to offer online classes and events.
The Library encourages visitors to limit their time in the buildings to ensure others may also enjoy in-building services, as capacity is limited.
The Library System selected these locations because they represent a breadth of the Library’s service area in geography, size of buildings and are good models to learn from as it prepares to open more libraries.
The Library System aligned plans to offer in-building services safely with the State of Washington’s Roadmap to Recovery. The health and safety of the public and staff is a top priority of the Library’s reopening plans, from mask requirements in buildings and social distance markers to Plexiglas partitions and ongoing sanitizing.
Throughout the summer, the Library plans to open 18 of its 20 locations for browsing services, as it learns from this pilot. The Library System will continue to offer curbside pick up of books, movies and other items at 19 Pierce County locations.