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  • UPDATE – Provincial announcement regarding public libraries and pickups


    We greatly appreciate the Province’s announcement that as part of the first phase of reopening libraries can begin to offer pick-up or delivery of materials. 

    There is a lot of work to do be able to offer these services while ensuring the safety of our employees and our customers. Our plan to resume our physical services needs to account for physical distancing requirements, provision of personal protective equipment, enhanced sanitary controls, and new protocols for employees and customers. We are working on offering holds pick-ups as soon as we can safely do so.  

    We will be communicating all new developments in our service offering to you on all our platforms, as soon as we have updates. 

    Thank you for your patience as we move through this rapidly evolving situation. 


    OPL branches, Bookmobile stops and Homebound delivery services are closed until June 30, 2020. The closure is in response to advice from Ottawa Public Health (OPH) with regards to COVID-19 (coronavirus) for the health and safety of our community. We will continue to monitor the situation and reassess as the situation evolves. Currently, please note:  

    • Due dates for all currently checked out materials have been extended and late fees suspended.
    • Book drops are not available since branches are closed. Hold on to OPL items and return them when branches reopen. 
    • Holds are suspended, and pick up expiry dates extended. This includes interlibrary loans (ILL).
    • Meeting room rentals are cancelled, and fees are being refunded; and
    • Computer bookings, programs, events and outreach activities are cancelled.
    • Expired cards, or those about to expire, have been extended. 

    You can use the Library online:

    We thank you for your patience and support, and we look forward to seeing you online and in person again soon.

Engage online until March 24 to help design new OPL-LAC facility


Visit until March 24 to help inform how the new Ottawa Public Library and Library and Archives Canada joint facility will take shape on the site at 555 Albert Street in the heart of Ottawa.


You can:

  • view a video to better understand the site for the new joint facility;
  • show the architects how you might arrive at the site;
  • show the architects what you consider to be the best viewpoints;
  • tell the architects what you think are the site’s most interesting features and landmarks; and,
  • view and provide feedback on preliminary concepts.


Continuing through 2019, there will be three additional phases of in-person and online engagement various design topics, including:

  • Iconic Features and Sustainability
  • Creating a Landmark Destination
  • Finishing Touches


A final design will be revealed at the end of 2019.


Sign up for updates and find more information at



The new library plans are wrong.

The library is valuable to all Ottawans. You can place a hold online, and a few days later you drop into your local branch to pick up the book or other material. Or checkout electronic versions online. The old idea of browsing the shelves is still useful, but mostly just for children (and this is important!!).

How can we improve the hold system? By purchasing more books! There are long waiting lists to borrow newer books. Also, the 'long tail' scheme that includes a few copies of less popular titles. And electronic versions, despite the cost. How can new buildings improve the hold system? Perhaps a warehouse-like building far from the centre? Or improved hold shelving.

Note that the new library plans do not support this, and are expensive. The multi-million budget could be re-purposed to buy many books! The current plans are for a building which is more of a monument to learning, which does have some merit. But at what cost! See the plans described at .

I have been suggesting these ideas for several years whenever the library called for input, but have been ignored.I also blogged about this years ago at .

Would you like to discuss this more?