INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Public Library announced Monday it will reopen all branches Feb. 15 at limited capacities.
Patrons will be allowed to enter library branches for computer use, browsing, hold pickup and self-checkout, a news release said.
All branches, except for the Central Library, will enforce a one-hour time limit if capacity is reached. People entering the Central Library will receive a badge limiting them to one hour.
The library's board met with Marion County Public Health Department Director Dr. Virginia Caine in January. Caine told the board she anticipates fewer COVID-19 cases now that the holiday peak has passed and said the positivity rate in the community is at its lowest level since late October and early November.
IndyPL CEO Jackie Nytes said Caine provided reassurance that libraries are not places where COVID-19 transmission is likely.
“Our ability to offer access to computers and our vast collection of materials is seen as a way to help the mental health of those in our community who are isolated and in need of a positive escape," Nytes said in a news release. "The consequences of this virus go beyond physical ailment, and The Library has a role in supporting the community in this way.”
The library will allow people to bring their personal laptops and electronic devices into branches to use the internet. Mask-wearing and social distancing inside buildings will be enforced and all programming events will remain online.