Library Temporarily Suspends In-Building Services Starting Dec. 8, 2020
Albany Public Library will temporarily close for in-building appointment services starting Tuesday, Dec. 8, due to the surge in positive cases of COVID-19 in Albany County.
“We have been preparing for the possibility that an increase in the virus spread in our community would require the library to move back a phase. Unfortunately, the time has come for us to stop in-building services,” said APL Executive Director Scott C. Jarzombek. “We take this step regretfully and want to assure the community that delivering library services as safely as possible is our main concern right now.”
The library is rolling back from Phase 2A into Phase 1B based on the positive daily test rate in Albany County, which has remained at or above 3% for the past 14 days. The phases and what each one entails are outlined in the APL Continuation of Service Plan. This document is updated regularly and approved monthly by the library’s Board of Trustees.
Even though the buildings will be temporarily closed to the public starting on Tuesday, Dec. 8, APL remains committed to providing a variety of services and materials to patrons:
- Curbside pickup of books, DVDs, audiobooks, and CDs will be available at five of the library’s branches — Arbor Hill/West Hill, Bach, Delaware, Howe, and Pine Hills. Patrons can request items by phone or the catalog on the website.
- Reference and research assistance by librarians will be done by phone and email between 10 am and 6 pm on Monday through Friday. Patrons can call any of these three phone numbers for assistance: (518) 217-8323, (518) 217-5601, or (518) 217-8554. They can also email email@example.com.
- Live programs will be conducted virtually via Zoom and recorded programs will be posted to YouTube.
- eMaterials — including books, movies, comic books, television shows, and music — will be available to download and stream from the APL website.
- Books, DVDs, and other physical items can be returned to the book drops at six branches — Arbor Hill/West Hill, Bach, Delaware, Howe, Pine Hills, and Washington Ave.
“We want to assure our patrons that we will continue to provide them access to material and information, we just have to do most of it virtually until the infection rate comes down,” Jarzombek said. “Staff and leaders are already discussing how to resume in-person appointment services when it is safe to do so.”