Hillsborough County is systematically reopening libraries to serve the public. Locally, the Brandon Regional Library, located at 619 Vonderburg Dr. in Brandon, reopened on April 5.
According to Chely Cantrell, Library Brand Innovation officer, “The library system has been selecting locations based on geographic locations in our reopening plan. The Brandon Regional Library was selected at this time geographically as we continue to open additional locations at 25 percent capacity.”
Selected spaces within the reopened libraries will operate at 25 percent capacity. The buildings will be open to the public Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. With the reopenings, curbside services at these locations will be discontinued. However, curbside services will continue at the buildings not yet open to the public.
Library Services has taken numerous steps to help ensure the safety of visitors. These include visits being limited to one hour, requiring children under the age of 17 to be accompanied by a parent, requiring face coverings and social distancing as well as temperature checks being conducted at the door. Also, study rooms, meeting rooms, makerspaces and recording studios are not available for use at this time.
Library programs, including story times, will continue virtually.
Cantrell said, “The library has always offered virtual content. Digital magazines, e-books, downloadable audiobooks and streaming movies have steadily grown in popularity, and last year was a record-setting year for digital borrowing. The only service we are offering differently is programming. The library’s programs are currently being offered live and virtual through www.HCPLC.org/Events. The library also offers on-demand recordings through the library’s YouTube channel.”
In addition, the library is offering Wi-Fi hotspots. Hotspots can be checked out at any library location, but they are housed at eight locations, including the Seffner-Mango Branch Library. You must be 17 years and older and have an adult resident library card. The devices can be checked out for 14 days.
Those who want to record their adventures can also check out GoPro Hero 7 from select libraries, including the Bloomingdale Regional Public Library. GoPros can be checked out for up to 14 days and you must be 17 years and older to do so.
For more information on all that the Hillsborough County Public Library Cooperative offers, please visit www.HCPLC.org.