CU libraries scheduled to open buildings Friday

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Photo Courtesy of Pixaby

Stacks and shelves of books line the edges of a narrow corridor.

By Samantha Boyle, Managing Editor for Reporting

The Urbana Free Library and Champaign Public Library are scheduled to open their buildings Friday as Illinois moves into Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois plan.

The Urbana library will start a “Grab and Go” meaning that patrons should enter the building, get what they need and go in order to minimize contact with staff and other patrons.

In addition, the only seating that will be available is for computer stations and masks are to be worn inside the building.

A limit of one hour per day in the building is also in place per patron and no meeting rooms or in-person programs will be available at this time.

The library also wants to reserve Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. for people vulnerable to COVID-19, meaning older adults or those with underlying medical conditions.

Both the Urbana and Champaign libraries will continue with curbside pickup even after the building reopens.

The Champaign library will also require everyone to wear a face mask inside the building and to stay six feet apart from everyone else.

All in-person events at the Champaign library are also canceled until Sept. 7. However, webinars for anyone interested are available and reservations can be made online.

Book returns will also be available starting on Friday and all returned items will be quarantined for 72 hours, according to a Champaign Public Library press release.

Since mid-May, more than 4,000 patrons at Champaign Public Library have been utilizing the curbside pickup and about 15,000 items have been checked out, the press release stated.

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