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Hartford Public Library will start the process of restoring services in mid-June by opening up its book drops for returns and taking hold requests for books and other materials.

Complete information about the service restoration can be found here or by going to the Hartford Public Library app.

“We continue to be cautious and deliberate in our preparations to resume service because the health and safety of our entire community is our priority during this pandemic,” said Bridget Quinn-Carey, HPL president and CEO.

Customers can begin to return items to book drops on Monday, June 15. The materials will be quarantined for 72 hours prior to being checked back in. Fines for overdue materials will continue to be waived until September 1, 2020. Book drops are available at the Downtown Library, Park Branch, Albany Branch, Camp Field Branch, and Dwight Branch.

Customers may begin to place holds on materials starting Monday, June 15. The library will introduce a new service called “HPL Grab Bag.” A customer who is looking for something to read or watch but might not be sure of just what to pick can fill out a form online about their interests and an HPL librarian will select books for them to try. Customers who don’t have online access can call the library to access the service.
“It is like a book concierge service,” said Marie Jarry, HPL’s director of public services.

Contact-free pick up service will start on June 22, 2020 and will be available at the Downtown Library.

Customers will be able to reserve books and other materials online or by calling the library at 860-695-6300. Once alerted that the materials are ready, they then can schedule a time to pick up . Holds will be available for pick up outside the Arch Street entrance to the Downtown Library. There will be designated free parking spaces available on Arch Street for customers picking up their orders. Materials will be stored in a brown paper bag and placed on tables outside the Arch Street lobby. Pick up times will be offered in 10 minute increments.HPL’s Library on Wheels will begin service throughout the city starting June 22, 2020. Requested materials will also be available at the Library on Wheels. The Library on Wheels will offer hold pickups, book giveaways, Census outreach, and a WiFi hotspot at the following times and locations: Mondays 10am-3pm Wish School 350 Barbour Street; Wednesdays 9am-2pm Burr School 400 Wethersfield Ave.; Fridays 8am-1pm CO:LAB 460 New Britain Ave.

“We know that people are nervous about transmission. The precautions we are taking are because we want to make sure that the community feels good about borrowing from us again. We take the safety of our customers and the safety of our staff into consideration when we make these plans,” Jarry said.

HPL continues to take a measured approach to reopening. No date has yet been set to restore on-site service to the public. Branches will remain closed. Saturday service is anticipated to resume July 2020.

Virtual programming and online services will continue to be provided.

HPL was closed for public service March 13 because of the spread of coronavirus. Staff began working offsite March 20. The library used that time to increase our online resources, spread Wi-Fi access throughout Hartford, make 3D masks for health providers, continued professional development, and launch successful virtual programming.

For more information, visit or call 860-695-6300.

About Hartford Public Library Now celebrating its 126th year, Hartford Public Library remains at the forefront of redefining the urban library experience in the 21st Century. With seven locations throughout the city, the library provides education, intellectual enrichment and cultural development for thousands of children, youth and adults every year. Hartford Public Library has also gained local and national recognition for its wide range of new initiatives and partnerships designed to meet the needs of a diverse and dynamic city and region, including immigration services, employment assistance and youth leadership training.