Good news! Singapore’s libraries are reopening on Wednesday, 1 July 2020. Book-lovers will once again be able to head down to the 25 public libraries around the island to get hold of their favourite books.
However, as we are still in Phase 2 of the post-Circuit Period, measures are being put in place to keep all patrons safe at the public libraries.
“We are delighted to welcome our patrons back to our physical facilities. As the health and safety of our patrons and staff remains our top priority, we have put in place Safe Management Measures so that everyone can have a safe, enjoyable and enriching experience when visiting our libraries and archives”, said Ng Cher Pong, National Library Board’s Chief Executive Officer.
Thinking of paying a visit to the libraries upon their reopening? Here are some are essential things you need to know.
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Things to Know about Singapore Libraries’ Reopening on 1 July
Facilities Being Reopened
In addition to the 25 public libraries that are reopening, the National Library Building, National Archives of Singapore and the Former Ford Factory will reopen to the public on 1 July 2020.
Shorter Opening Hours
The National Library Building, public libraries and National Archives of Singapore will be open from 11 am to 7 pm daily, except public holidays, during this period of time.
The Former Ford Factory at Upper Bukit Timah Road will be open from 11 am to 4 pm.
The Oldham Theatre at National Archives of Singapore will continue to remain closed.
During this period of the libraries reopening, patrons will only be allowed to enter the libraries to borrow and return physical library materials. Reservation and book drop services will also be available.
Seating and study areas, including newspaper reading areas and multimedia stations, will be closed. Programmes, guided tours and events at the libraries’ physical spaces will also continue to be suspended.
Maximum of 50 Patrons Per Floor
To minimise the crowds at the libraries, there will be a maximum of 50 persons allowed per floor.
30-minute Time Limit per Visit
Each person’s visit to the library will also be limited to a maximum of 30 minutes.
While walk-ins are allowed at the library, patrons can also book one 30-minute time slot per day via an online booking system.
Those visiting the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library at National Library Building and the National Archives of Singapore will need to make an online booking reservation beforehand.
Details of the booking system will be made available at a later date.
6-week Loan Period Extended Till 31 December 2020
Library patrons will also continue to enjoy longer loan period of six weeks for physical library materials all the way till 31 December 2020.
Other Safety Measures at the Libraries
In addition to the above, the National Library Board has indicated that high touch points will be cleaned and sanitised once every two hours. Other safety measures such as the use of SafeEntry, wearing of masks, temperature-taking and safe distancing must be observed.
The National Library Board will also be launching a crowd capacity website for patrons to check on how crowded the libraries are. This will be made available at a later date closer to the reopening of the libraries.