Curbside Pickup Now Available at Washington Ave. Branch

March 15, 2021 | Library News

Albany Public Library’s largest branch is opening today, March 15, for curbside pickup of materials. The Washington Ave. Branch, at 161 Washington Ave., is hosting drive up service as well as walk up service.

“We are thrilled to be welcoming patrons back to the Washington Ave. Branch for the first time in a year to pick up library books, DVDs, and other items via our contactless curbside pickup service,” said APL Executive Director Scott C. Jarzombek. “It’s been exactly one year since we closed the library down due to COVID-19. The fact that we are able to reopen our biggest location today is a huge milestone, and a testament to the resilience, effort, and commitment of the staff to safely provide services to our community.”

Starting today, March 15, patrons who wish to pick up items at the Washington Ave. Branch may request books, audiobooks, DVDs, CDs, and museum passes by phone (518-217-5601), email (washingtonave@albanypubliclibrary.org), or the online catalog. Once the items arrive at the branch, staff notify the patrons and schedule a pickup time. Once patrons arrive at the branch for their scheduled appointment, staff either place items in the vehicle trunk or back seat, or on a table outside the building.

(3/16/21 Update: The main phone system at Washington Ave. is currently being repaired. Please call (518) 217-5601 to reach staff at that location until further notice. This is also the number to use to schedule curbside pickup.)

The curbside pickup system is designed to be contactless and accessible to people arriving by vehicle, as well as those who walk or bike to the branch. All patrons are required to wear face masks covering the mouth and nose. Staff wear gloves and masks when delivering items to the patrons.

Once they are done with the library items, patrons are asked to return them to the book drop at any of the six open APL branches. Staff cannot accept returns at pickup appointments. Library materials are quarantined for 48 hours before they are checked in and placed back into the collection. APL is a fine-free library, so there are never fines for late items.

The library is currently in Phase 2B of the Continuation of Service Plan, which included a number of changes across the library district in the past two weeks. The redundancy schedule plan ended on March 1, returning all staff to the buildings. Five branches added services, including browsing of the collection, inside the buildings on March 8. And now Washington Ave. is adding curbside pickup on March 15.

The North Albany Branch remains closed at this time. 

3/16/21 Update: The main phone system at Washington Ave. is currently being repaired. Please call (518) 217-5601 to reach staff at that location until further notice. This is also the number to use to schedule curbside pickup.

Stephanie Simon

Stephanie Simon is APL's public information officer, and manages the library's communications, public relations, and marketing efforts. No, she isn't a librarian, but feels as if she's among her people here at the library.