Our approach to put people & safety first

As we share information about COVID-19, here’s information about how your public library is continuing to serve you during this pandemic. Questions? Contact us now and call 708.383.8200. For crisis resources and support, contact the library’s Social Services and Public Safety team.

To help continue to contain the spread of COVID-19 and to serve our community, the library is reintroducing services and reopening buildings in stages, following clearly defined service levels. This plan, approved by the Board of Library Trustees at its April 28 meeting, continues to evolve and to be informed by the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, the state of Illinois, and the Oak Park Public Health Department. Read the full plan now »

Summary of service levels


Digital collections and virtual services only. Remote customer service, virtual programs, and meetings. Buildings, returns, and parking garage closed.


Main Library open with limits; branches closed. Physical materials access is self-service or delivery. Material returns are accepted. Public computers may be available by appointment.


Full service restored at all library locations. In-person assistance returns. Study and meeting rooms open. On-site programs and in-person outreach resumes.

Since June, the library has been prepared to move back to earlier service stages if we see the health, safety, and well-being of our staff members and community members would require that action.

Today, our intention is to help reduce the infection rate in Oak Park and around Chicago. See Oak Park testing status bulletins, demographic data, and more related to coronavirus in Oak Park »

About physical materials access (expected to return January 22)

EXISTING HOLDS: Even if you’ve received a SWAN cancellation notice or items drop from your account since we closed the Main Library in November, your holds should still be available for checkout. Please contact us with questions if you are unsure about your individual item status. Learn more about how lobby holds pickup works, including open hours, here »

NEW HOLDS: At this time, you can place holds on Oak Park items only. To keep each other safe we have chosen not to participate in resource sharing right now. This helps limit our staff contact with each other and respects other SWAN member libraries’ limited resources and safety. 

CAN’T FIND IT IN OUR COLLECTION? Think we should own a copy of a specific title? Recommend a purchase » Each request is considered based on our predefined selection criteria.

CANCELING OR DELAYING YOUR HOLDS: You can log in to cancel or delay (suspend) your holds in your account anytime. Here’s more help from SWAN on how to manage your holds »

Keep your library items for now. 

Yes, returns are accepted at the Main Library only—in the book drop outside the Main Library main entrance and inside the vestibule and lobby. Hours and more »

These book drops remain closed:

  • In Village of Oak Park Parking Lot 55, accessible from North Boulevard (between Kenilworth and Oak Park avenues). See on Google Maps »
  • At Maze Branch in front of the building on Gunderson Avenue.
  • At Dole Branch just north of the building on Augusta Street.

Please note: You will be responsible for items left outside book drops. If drops are full, please do not leave items next to or on top of the drop. Thank you!

Before they are checked back in, all items are quarantined. This means it will take longer than it used to for your account to reflect the updated status of your returned items.

Why quarantine? Unlike retail stores and restaurants that can offer more one-way transactions, including pickup and delivery, libraries circulate items between many people. This poses a different health risk to staff and the public, both when they are handled and returned. Learn more about the research »

Yes. When logged into your library account, you can add titles you want to remember to “My Lists.” Find instructions from SWAN here »

Any items checked out from the Oak Park Public Library do not have late fines.

All items have lost or damage replacement costs.

See our policy »

For now, due dates for all SWAN library materials have been extended as needed.

SWAN is a consortium of about 100 west suburban libraries, and when it comes to late fines, the lending library’s rules apply.

It can be confusing, so if you have questions, please contact us.

Not at this time.

Please note that many university and public libraries are currently unable to fill interlibrary loan requests. This may cause delays, or we may be unable to fill your request at this time. Visit oppl.org/requests to get started »

No, we are not accepting materials donations (books, DVDs, CDs) at this time. Find area locations who may accept book donations now »

  • Don’t microwave library items. Most have RFID tags that can catch on fire in a microwave.
  • Don’t leave library materials in a hot car, as extreme heat can damage them.
  • Don’t expose library items to ultraviolet light, which also can damage them.
  • Don’t spray library items with disinfectant, which can damage covers and pages. You may use sanitizing wipes on plastic book covers and DVD and CD cases.

All returns (and all items found in and around the library pulled from their proper place on the shelves) are placed in quarantine before being checked in and reshelved. This means it will take longer than it used to for your account to reflect changes. More »

About in-person events, meetings & community visits

No, there are no in-person events or meetings until we return to full service. 

Library virtual programs for all ages continue to be added to this webpage and to oppl.org/calendar. (If you are on mobile, select either “Virtual & Offsite” or “All Locations” to see all virtual programs on the calendar.)

And library supported virtual meetings (via Zoom) are also available. Learn more »

Not until Service Level 3. 

Learn more about using virtual meeting spaces. 


I have another question & want to speak to someone

Please contact us! We continue working remotely, answering your questions as quickly as we can. Call us at 708.383.8200 and leave a message. Or ask us via oppl.org/contact. A library staff member will respond as soon as possible.

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