Libraries to reopen come July 1
More good news, however, there will be restrictions in place.
More good news on openings, however, with restrictions in place. The National Library Building, the National Archives of Singapore building, 25 public libraries and the Former Ford Factory will reopen to the public on July 1, 2020, however with shorter opening hours and capacity controls in place, shared the National Library Board (NLB). This is in line with the safe reopening measures under Phase 2 and to safeguard the health and safety of the library’s patrons and staff.
The National Library, its public libraries and the National Archives of Singapore will operate from 11am to 7pm daily until further notice, while the Former Ford Factory will open from 11am to 4pm. The Oldham Theatre will remain closed.
The libraries will operate on a ‘borrow and go’ model where patrons will be able to borrow and return physical library materials as well as use the reservation and book drop services. However, all seating and study areas in the library’s premises, including newspaper and multimedia stations, will not be available. All programmes, guided tours and events in the library’s physical spaces will also continue to be temporarily suspended. Patrons are encouraged to use the NLB mobile app to scan and borrow physical library materials as a means of contactless borrowing.
In line with the safe distancing measures, there will be a 50-persons-per-floor limit in all of NLB’s facilities. It will also implement timed entry and limit each patron’s visit to the public libraries to 30 minutes. To minimise the need to queue for entry into the libraries, patrons are encouraged to make an online booking for their preferred entry slots. Patrons visiting the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library and National Archives of Singapore for their research needs will also be required to make an online booking which will have three time slots available daily. Details on the online booking system will be provided a few days before the reopening on the NLB website (link is provided below).
Patrons who visit NLB’s facilities must observe the Ministry of Health’s advisories such as the use of SafeEntry for check-in and check-out, compulsory wearing of mask, temperature taking, and safe distancing measures. In view of the capacity restrictions, patrons may have to queue and wait before they can enter our premises. Patrons can check https://go.gov.sg/library-visit-crowd or the NLB mobile app (https://mobileapp.nlb.gov.sg) for the real-time crowd capacity in the libraries and archives before visiting.
To ensure that NLB’s facilities remain safe for its patrons, cleaning and sanitisation of high touch points will be carried out once every two hours. During the circuit breaker, NLB had extended the loan period for physical library materials from three to six weeks. This extension of loan period for these materials will continue until December 31, 2020.
NLB’s digital offerings will continue to be available at www.nlb.gov.sg, the NLB mobile app and its social media channels (@nlbsg). This includes more than 800,000 eBooks and audiobooks, digital storytelling sessions, unlimited checkouts for its curated collection of eBooks, free access to SPH‘s eNewspapers, online talks, programmes and workshops, as well as its learning packages.
(** PHOTO CREDIT: Unsplash/BBH Singapore)