Thursday, April 02, 2020

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on April 2, 2020. Updates have been published on April 3, April 20, May 1, May 15, June 26, Dec. 1, 2020, and January 5, 2021.

We’ve had many questions from our patrons over the past months! We strive to be a trusted source of information for Arlington, so we’ve collected these questions to answer them in one place. We will update this page as needed as the situation changes. 

If your question isn’t answered here, please get in touch with us for help. Click here to ask your question online. You can also give us a call for help at (817) 459-6900 from Monday through Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.  

We miss our patrons and look forward to seeing you again soon. 

Where can I learn more about COVID-19 or the novel coronavirus? 

The City of Arlington maintains an up-to-date coronavirus page, full of the latest information, news, and expert recommendations. 

When will the Library open?

The Arlington Public Library is continuing to transition service models in the coming months. The Library remains an important resource for Arlington’s educational and entertainment needs and is committed to providing a range of safe services to the community. Within the guidelines set by Governor Greg Abbott and the Arlington City Council, the Library is open at reduced capacities.

The George W. Hawkes Downtown Library is open to the public Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at a 25 percent occupancy load.

The East Library and Recreation Center is open at 50 percent occupancy load during the following:

  • Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
  • Friday through Saturday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. 
  • Sunday, 2 p.m. - 6 p.m. 

The following library locations are open to the public Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at a 50 percent occupancy load: 

  • Southwest Branch
  • Woodland West Branch
  • Southeast Branch
  • Northeast Branch
  • Lake Arlington Branch

All our locations will continue to offer curbside pick up. Click here to read all about our reopening.

How many people can be in the Library?

We are operating at 50 percent of our regular operating capacity at all of our Branches, including staff. The George W. Hawkes Downtown Library is operating at 25 percent. Building supervisors will monitor the number of patrons in the building on an hourly basis. 

What safety measures are in place?

  • Beginning June 27, Tarrant County Judge B. Glen Whitley's executive order requires face masks or face covering be worn in all entities that provide goods or services directly to the public. Click here to read more about the executive order.
  • We request patrons to maintain social distancing in the Library. Spacing markers will be in place in the buildings to help! Patrons who do not comply with staff instructions will be asked to leave, following our standard Expectations for Behavior.
  • High-touch areas will be cleaned multiple times a day and overnight.
  • Masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, and other items will be available for patrons as supplies allow.
  • Furniture has been rearranged to maintain a proper distance between patrons.
  • Select computer stations will be available to maintain a proper distance between patrons. Staff will not be providing one-on-one technology assistance during this time.
  • Click here to read all about our reopening.

What if I have a medical and/or religious reason that exempts me from wearing a mask? 

Masks are required per the Tarrant County Mask Mandate at all City of Arlington facilities. The Library can accommodate those that choose not to wear a mask by bringing items to them through curbside pick up or at our designated pick up area in the lobby. In this area, patrons can speak to staff and receive assistance with checking out books, printing, and more.

What should I do with items that need to be returned? 

You may return items to the outside book drops or in-person at any of our seven locations. Items checked out before our closure are due June 1. Please return your items to avoid late fees! Editor's Note: Items returned will be quarantined for 168 hours / 7 days before being checked in. 

What about fines and late fees? 

When we closed our locations in March 2020, we extended due dates on all items that were currently checked out to June 1. Any items checked out before we closed are now due. Please return these items to avoid late fees!

For items you are checking out through curbside pickup or in-person, standard due dates according to item type will apply. Books will check out for three weeks and DVDs will check out for one week. 

No new fines or fees were charged while our locations were closed. If you already have fines on your account, you may pay them online. During this time, patrons can check out eBooks and access our digital content with an account balance under $50.00. 

What should I do about the items I have on hold? 

We're offering our standard hold service again. Items are available to pick up by curbside at any location or check them out in person at our library locations. Click here to learn how to pick up your holds!

How does curbside mobile printing work?

Curbside printing will be available from Monday to Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m at all library locations. A library card is required to use curbside document printing. Follow these easy steps to get started! 

  • Use the Library’s mobile printing to send your prints. You can choose between emailing your documents, uploading them, or sending them through the PrinterOn app. See Mobile Printing for more instructions. 
  • Drive to your selected location and park at the Curbside Service location. 
  • Call the Library at (817) 459-6900 and let staff know you’re here to pick up your prints. 
  • Library staff will verify the details of your print job over the phone before printing it and bringing it outside. 
  • Documents must be picked up the same day they are sent to the Library.
  • The cost of printing will be added to your library account.
  • Black and white prints: $0.15
  • Color prints: $0.50

What if my library card needs to be renewed? 

Library cards must be renewed every two years in person or online. You may do this at any branch by presenting a government-issued ID that has a photo, recent proof of your current address, and paying any balance owed in full.

We are also now offering online renewals, click here to renew your card.

If you need help please contact us between 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday at 817-459-6900.

What about my meeting room reservation? 

All meeting room reservations are unavailable.

Can I reserve a study room? 

Yes. Study rooms are available at the George W. Hawkes Downtown Library and the East Library and Recreation Center. Library cardholders can reserve a study room for a maximum of 4 hours. You can not have more than three active reservations at a time and can not book more than three months in advance.

Reserve your room here.

Have you considered curbside service? 

We are now offering curbside pickup for your holds. Holds may be picked up at any Library location from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday to Saturday. Click here to learn how to pick up your holds!

What library resources can I access from home? 

The Library’s online offerings include eBookseAudiobooksresearch databases, and digital magazines and digital newspapers.  These are all available 24/7 to library cardholders.  For a complete list, visit our list of database resources

I don’t have a library card. How can I get one? 

Arlington, Mansfield, and Kennedale residents can always apply for a free library card! Click here to apply online at arlingtonlibrary.org. You will receive a temporary eCard account, which can be used to access our digital content like ebooks. 

You can also give us a call at (817) 459-6900 to apply for a card over the phone. Phone service is available Monday through Friday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

I have another question that isn’t answered here. 

Click here to ask your question online. You can also give us a call for help at (817) 459-6900 from Monday through Friday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.