Our plan to reintroduce services, reopen buildings

We are here for you & we are in this together

As we share the latest information and guidelines from local and national officials about the COVID-19 virus, we want to make sure you have the latest information about your library, too. Because updates and best practices are ever-evolving, please revisit this page, oppl.org/covid19 and the library’s social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) for the most current updates.

About connecting with us

Putting people & safety first

To help contain the spread of COVID-19 and to continue to serve our community, the library has a plan to reintroduce services and reopen buildings in stages, following clearly defined service levels. This plan, approved by the Board of Library Trustees at its April 28 meeting, continues to evolve and be informed by the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, the state of Illinois, and the Oak Park Public Health Department. Read the complete plan now »

Summary of library service levels


Contact-free holds pickup, Main Library only. Keep your borrowed items; staggered returns to come. Buildings remain closed to public.


Main Library open with specific capacity limits and some onsite staff for materials, technology support. Public computer use by appointment only.


Dole & Maze reopen. Smaller-scale public meetings and library programs. Study room use only by appointment. Full stacks, special collections access.


Full service restored. Larger-scale library programs. Onsite storytime, outreach to preschools.

In short, we know a return to all public spaces and all library services will not be immediate. Putting the health, safety, and well-being of our community, our patrons, and our library staff first, we will reintroduce services following a carefully planned and research-informed approach.

For example, while staff work inside the Main Library only will begin on Monday, June 1, initially buildings will remain closed to the public. Dole and Maze branches will remain closed. We expect to accept staggered returns of materials gradually, as items will be quarantined for seven days before they are checked in. No in-person public gatherings or meeting spaces will be immediately available per Oak Park’s order prohibiting local public events through June. And all in-person library events are cancelled through August. Check here for what’s happening virtually »

About physical library items

Yes! We expect to offer contact-free holds pickup. We have not yet set that exact date. More details about the process are in development, and we plan to share more in mid-June.

Yes! Through the catalog, you can still place holds on Oak Park items to be picked up at the Main Library only. Those holds will remain in a queue, and you will be notified when your item is ready for pickup. When delivery between SWAN libraries is fully restored, you will be able to resume placing holds on other libraries’ items.

Not yet. At this time all internal and outside book drops remain sealed, and we are not collecting and emptying book drops. We ask that you please hold on to your materials until we announce returns are possible. It is important to know that there is no confirmed timeline yet for our regional library system (RAILS) to begin to share SWAN and non-SWAN materials again between libraries. All SWAN due dates will continue to be extended as needed. Currently, SWAN due dates are set as July 31. And remember, there are no late fines for Oak Park items. More details about returning items will be shared in June.

Yes. When logged into your library account, you can add titles you want to remember to “My Lists.” Find instructions from SWAN here »

For now, due dates for all SWAN library materials have been extended as needed. SWAN is a consortium of nearly 100 west suburban libraries, and when it comes to late fines, the lending library’s rules apply. It can be confusing, so if you have questions, please contact us.

Yes! But only online article requests may be fulfilled at this time. Please note, however, that most university and public libraries have temporarily stopped filling all interlibrary loan requests, and therefore we may not be able to obtain your articles at this time. Any requests for physical materials will be postponed until the library reopens. Visit oppl.org/requests »

Not yet. Please keep your materials donations (books, DVDs, CDs), as we cannot accept any at any library location right now.

We are following protocols set by the CDC, the American Library Association, and additional health care agencies. Right now, any returned materials will be quarantined for seven days before being checked in. It is also important to know that there is no current timeline for our regional library system (RAILS) or our online catalog consortium (SWAN) to begin to deliver materials again from library to library. Regarding authoritative guidance on matters such as the quarantine of materials and other ways to determine when it will be safe to resume the circulation of physical materials, we are hopeful about an important partnership announced in April among the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), OCLC Inc., and Batelle. Read the IMLS press release about that research partnership and the important information that should come from it.

We plan to follow guidelines set by the CDC, the library industry’s best practices, and the Oak Park Department of Public Health. We are also hopeful about an important partnership among the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), OCLC Inc., and Batelle. Read more about that research »

About summer reading, in-person events, meetings, and community visits

No, not through August. Library virtual programs continue to be added to this webpage and to oppl.org/calendar. (If you are on mobile, select either “Virtual & Offsite” or “All Locations” to see all virtual programs on the calendar.)

Yes! Virtual, summer-long programs for kids age 3 through rising 9th graders and for adults and teens both launch June 1!

Not yet. With circumstances changing daily, we are not accepting in-person meeting or study room reservations. For meetings online, we are developing a new virtual meeting room service that uses library technology and library staff support to help you host community meetings. More about this new service is coming soon.

Not right now. We are not making any visits or deliveries anywhere, including to homes, daycares, or senior centers, but we are staying connected, conducting virtual visits, and sharing new video content daily at 10 am weekdays for young kids and families.

I have another question and want to speak to someone

Please contact us! We continue working remotely, answering your questions as quickly as we can. Call us at 708.383.8200 and leave a message. Or ask us via oppl.org/contact. A library staff member will respond as soon as possible.


Stay current on news and new arrivals.

Close Bitnami banner