All the libraries on Vancouver Island operated by the Vancouver Island Regional Library, including the new one in Chemainus (pictured), closed as of March 16 due to the COVID-19 crisis. (File picture)

All the libraries on Vancouver Island operated by the Vancouver Island Regional Library, including the new one in Chemainus (pictured), closed as of March 16 due to the COVID-19 crisis. (File picture)

Libraries on Vancouver Island close due to COVID-19

Vancouver Island Regional Library’s eLibrary remains open

  • Mar. 16, 2020 2:37 p.m.

Vancouver Island Regional Library will close all of its library branches to the public on March 16 at 8 p.m. due to the COVID-19 situation and recommendations put forward today by the province’s chief medical health officer.

“In coming to this difficult decision, we paid particular attention to the province’s prohibition on gatherings of more than 50 people, and the strong appeal for everyone to stay home during this critical time,” said VIRL’s executive director Rosemary Bonanno.

“In this rapidly changing environment, we believe this is the best decision for our staff, customers, and larger public.”

As a result of the closures, VIRL has extended all due dates by six weeks and asks customers not to return any library materials until branches have reopened to the public.

Throughout the closure, VIRL’s eLibrary, which includes thousands of ebooks and audiobooks, scores of downloadable music, and hours of streaming movies of TV, will remain open for anyone with a VIRL library card.

Coronavirus