SAN FRANCISCO—The San Francisco Public Library’s Main branch reopened Monday, May 4, after being closed for over 14 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The city’s libraries have been closed since March 2020. The library is located at 100 Larkin Street in the Mid-Market neighborhood of the city.

“I know that people have really been missing the library, and though we’ve adapted to provide more to-go options and online resources, there’s nothing quite like getting to browse the shelves and pick out your next book,” said Mayor London Breed in a statement.

Currently, only the first floor of the main library will be open. As part of a “Browse and Bounce” initiative, patrons can use computers for a maximum of 50 minutes. They can look through shelves to browse books, movies, and music for up to an hour.

The Main Library will be open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. and Sunday from 12 p.m. until 5:30 p.m.

F83 conducted a survey of 587 residents in San Francisco. Ninety-five percent of those surveyed considered libraries an essential service like parks, hospitals and schools.

The Chinatown branch will open on May 17, with the Mission Bay branch opening a day later on May 18. There have been no announcements of when the remaining 31 branches will reopen.

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I am a senior at Temple University in Philadelphia. Throughout my life, I have had a passion for writing and storytelling. I find comfort in writing – it has always been a way I can comfortably express myself. I have also had a passion for politics – specifically, social justice and equality. These interests of mine have led me to major in journalism and political science at my university. As the field of Journalism is changing, I have gained numerous multimedia skills in order to further my story-telling. I am a sports geek, a lover of music, and an outdoorsman. I hope to spread my passions with the world.