SPL working out plans for a phased reopening while continuing to expand digital offerings

Southwest Public Libraries has extended closure of its two locations, Grove City Library and Westland Area Library, as leaders continue to work out plans for a safe reopening. Timing remains dependent on evolving state and federal guidelines, the results of an important Battelle study investigating the longevity of COVID-19 on library materials, and adequate acquisition of supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE) for the safety of patrons and staff.

Developing proper protocol for safe handling of library materials is key to reopening, which is why SPL is eagerly anticipating the results of Battelle’s study. The study is the result of a partnership between Battelle, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the Online Computer Library Center (OCLC). A specific conclusion date for the study is unavailable, but results are expected to take several weeks.

“We’re anxious to reopen our doors and serve our patrons in person again, but we must do so safely and responsibly,” says Mark Shaw, Director of SPL. “Patron and staff safety remain of great priority.”

Reopening will be phased with plans to offer limited curbside service initially. Complete plans will not be finalized until results from the study are known.

Even as SPL prepares for a safe reopening, the library continues to serve patrons digitally and expand digital offerings. Patrons are invited to enjoy:

  • Virtual Storytimes: offered Tuesdays & Thursdays at 10:30 a.m. via Facebook and YouTube.

  • Library Live Chats: chat with Adult Services staff about books, movies, podcasts, and more. Offered Wednesdays from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. & Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. via Facebook comments.

  • WiFi access from parking lots: access hours have been extended to be available 24/7. Signal strength cannot be guaranteed. SPL apologizes for any inconvenience.

  • Digital Library: e-books, e-audiobooks, streaming music and movies, independent learning courses, and more available at swpl.org 24/7.

Book drops remain closed currently, and hold and due dates have been readjusted. Patrons are asked to hold on to materials and disregard any due notices they receive at this time. While the library is closed, nothing is due, no fees will accrue, and reserves will not be sent back.


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FAQs About Temporary Closure

  • Items Due
    Due dates for all items checked out, including those through Interlibrary Loan, SearchOhio or OhioLINK, have been extended to June 1. Due to these unusual circumstances, we will work with anyone with items that were already past due before the closure. Please disregard any overdue notices you may receive.

  • Book Drops
    Book drops at both locations are closed. Please keep all materials during this time of closure. No fees will be charged to your account.

  • Holds
    Holds listed as Ready for Pick-up will be held at your pick-up location for 5 days after SPL reopens. Please disregard the pick-up date listed on your account. You may continue to place holds for items through the library’s catalog. All holds will show as “Suspended” until we reopen.

  • New Library Cards
    During our unexpected closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you can still sign up online for a library card. Click here to sign up. On your “successful registration screen”, you will receive a temporary barcode (PACREG#######). You can use this temporary barcode and the pin you assigned to your account to begin immediately using digital library services. Once the library reopens, you have 30 days to come into one of our locations with a valid photo ID and proof of address to receive your full access card. All applicants must be residents of Ohio.

  • Existing Library Card Numbers and PINs
    If you have a library card and do not know your number, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the full name on your card. During this unprecedented closure, we will send your card number to the e-mail associated with your account as soon as possible.

    Library card PINs are 4 digits long. The PIN defaults to the last 4 numbers of the phone number associated with your account. You may have also opted to reset your PIN to a 4-digit number of your choosing. If you have registered for an account through our website, you can use the “Forgot your PIN?” link to be emailed a link to reset it. Please note: Library staff cannot reset your PIN for you.

Follow us on social media! Facebook @SPLFranklinCountyOH and Instagram @southwestpl

Library Hours

Sun Closed
Mon, Tue, Wed      10:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Thur 10:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Fri, Sat 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM


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Grove City Library

3959 Broadway
Grove City, OH 43123

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Westland Area Library

4740 West Broad Street
Columbus, OH 43228

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