Another step forward for the return of public libraries: King County Library System said Friday that all of its 50 branches, including those currently closed or offering only curbside service, will be open for in-person visits by July 13.
Currently, 19 of KCLS’ 50 branches are open for patrons to enter; most of the others are offering Curbside to Go services. The branches will soon begin to phase out curbside service as in-building access increases. As more branches reopen, services will be modified at first, gradually adapting over time. At present, masks are required at all locations. More details about what to expect will be provided by the end of June.
A Seattle Public Library representative said Friday that SPL will announce additional reopening branches next week; currently seven out of the library’s 27 locations are open for in-person visits, with nine others offering curbside services. The library plans to return reopened branches to 100% capacity in July, but patrons will still be required to wear masks, for the safety of unvaccinated children and medically vulnerable individuals. All libraries will be open at pre-pandemic levels by later this summer or early fall, the spokesperson said.
Sno-Isle Libraries made some changes this month: adjusting its building occupancy numbers, and dropping the 30-minute browsing limits. Twenty out of 23 libraries are currently open for in-person visits; masks are required. A Sno-Isle representative said that the Mill Creek and Arlington libraries — two of the three still closed — would reopen in the next few weeks. The Lake Stevens branch will reopen later this year in a newly remodeled location.