UPDATE 6/29: Due to a surge in COVID-19 infections, the City of El Paso has postponed the reopening as a precaution until a date to be determined later.

Restrictions on the use of certain city facilities that were imposed in March to slow the spread of the coronavirus are slowly being relaxed as the city continues to transition from COVID crisis to COVID coexistence.

Libraries are the next city run facilities to get the phased-in approach to reopening. Beginning Monday, June 29, the west side, east side, and northeast branches will be available for curbside check-out services on a limited basis. Here’s what you need to know about the reopening of public libraries.

The libraries listed below will be the only ones open for what they’re calling ‘curbside check-out,’ and only on certain days of the week. No one will be allowed inside the libraries. Curbside check-out is the only service that will be offered initially. No other library activities will be provided.

• Richard Burges (9600 Dyer St.) 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Mondays and Thursdays
• Esperanza Acosta Moreno (12480 Pebble Hills Blvd.) 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Tuesday and Thursdays
• Dorris Van Doren (551 Redd Rd.) 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Wednesdays and Fridays

The process for checking out materials is as follows:

Materials will need to be checked out online and picked up by appointment to ensure safety for staff and the public. Place items on hold through the online catalog or by calling one of the three libraries listed above. Only the collections at those regional branches will be available for holds.

• Wait for notification by either phone or email that your items are ready.
• Call the library back to schedule a pickup day and time.
• After you arrive, call the phone number posted outside.
• Show your photo ID without opening the window of your vehicle.
• Open the backseat door or trunk of your car from the inside. Library staff will place your bagged library materials inside your vehicle.

Returning Borrowed Items

Materials can be returned on Mondays only from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and only to one of the four locations below. The blue book drop bins will be located outside.

• Dorris Van Doren, 551 E. Redd Rd.
• Esperanza Acosta Moreno, 12480 Pebble Hills
• Richard Burges, 9600 Dyer
• Main, 501 N. Oregon

Libraries were one of the facilities that two months ago were given no chance of reopening anytime in the foreseeable future because of the pandemic's effect on the city's budget. Although the financial situation hasn't changed, city officials made the decision to bite the bullet and reopen some quality of life services to maintain good mental health, according to a city press release.

City parks recently reopened with some restrictions, and the El Paso Zoo will allow visitors back in starting July 1.

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