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Current Services

As Waterloo Region moves into Step 3 on Friday, July 16th we are happy to provide more in-person services to our members.  All Idea Exchange locations are open Monday to Saturday, 10:00am-6:00pm Closed Sundays.

New!

  • Public computers are available for up to 60 minutes each day. Reservations are recommended.
  • Capacity limits are increased, but physical distancing must be maintained. You may be asked to wait before entering.
  • On Monday, July 19th, more Makerspace and Creative studios equipment will be available by appointment only and if the equipment can be sanitized.
  • The Cambridge Art Galleries will resume their current and upcoming exhibition schedule.

Continued services from Step 2:

  • Indoor contactless holds pick up and drop off of materials
  • Browsing of materials
  • Printing, faxing, photocopying, scanning
  • Study rooms and wi-fi and study workstations (limit of 1 hour); up to 2 individuals or one household at a time.

The safety of staff and our members is very important to us. Please follow the guidelines listed under Keeping Our Community Safe and How You Can Help

  • Complete the COVID-19 Screening Questionnaire before entering our physical spaces.
  • A face mask is still required even if you are fully vaccinated. Please limit your visit to 1 hour or less.

Our online resources are available 24/7. Sign up for an online membership, download eBooks and eAudiobooks, magazines and stream movies. You can also access free educational resources from anywhere.

Sign up to receive more information about services and programs via your inbox with e-news from Idea Exchange.

checkmarkSERVICES THAT ARE CURRENTLY AVAILABLE

We are always here to help answer your questions or suggest a new read, something to watch or listen to. Call or email us your question or chat with us during open hours.

booksPick-up Holds and Browse Materials

person using computerStudy Tables and Wi-Fi Access

person readingOld Post Office: Discovery Centre and Riverview Room

people viewing artCambridge Art Galleries Exhibitions

printerPrinting, Copying, Scanning, Faxing

SERVICES AVAILABLE BY RESERVATION

person using computerLimited Computer Access

ruler, pencil, paintbrushOld Post Office: Makerspace and Creative Studios

people meetingStudy Rooms

red X symbolSERVICES THAT ARE UNAVAILABLE

  • Extended in-person visits
  • In-person programs
  • Social or group seating
  • Toys and play areas in all Children's departments
  • Virtual Reality
  • Print newspapers

home with heart insideKEEPING OUR COMMUNITY SAFE

We have implemented public health recommendations to ensure the safety of our staff and members. Health and safety measures include:

  • Limiting our visitor capacity and practising 2-metre physical distancing at all times
  • Having staff and visitors follow Region of Waterloo’s mandatory Face Covering By-law
  • Face Masks and hand sanitizer available as needed
  • Requiring members to limit the length of their visit to 60 minutes or less
  • Asking visitors to practice good hand hygiene and cough/sneeze etiquette throughout their visit
  • Using acrylic protective shields at all staff service points
  • Enhancing our cleaning protocols, including regular sanitizing of high-touch surfaces and equipment.
  • Continuing contact free Pick-up Service at all locations by request
  • Not allowing food or spillable drinks

HOW YOU CAN HELP

  • Stay home if you are feeling unwell, have a fever, new cough, or difficulty breathing
  • Wear a face covering
  • Practice physical distancing
  • Sanitize or wash upon entrance to the building and frequently throughout your visit
  • Limit your visit to 60 minutes or less

For more information, please review our Safety and Cleaning Procedures. Please follow all posted instructions and refer to the Code of Conduct for our full policy on visiting Idea Exchange locations.

OTHER QUESTIONS YOU MAY HAVE

IS IT SAFE TO BORROW MATERIALS?

Yes, it is safe to borrow materials.

As of June 11, 2021, the provincial government has removed the COVID-19 regulation that library materials must be quarantined when returned.

This change means that you won’t have to wait as long for library materials and items will be checked in off your account with no extra delay. We are still providing an additional 7 days on loan periods if you wish to continue to isolate your checked-out materials at home.

Idea Exchange continues to evolve and adjust our procedures as new information comes to light around COVID-19 and public health measures change and are updated. We closely monitor the developments related to COVID-19 and we continue to use an evidence-based approach to inform decisions around the relaunch of our services and safety protocols for staff and public. Based on new evidence, the risk of transmission of the COVID-19 virus through inanimate surfaces such as library materials is very unlikely.

WHY DID I RECEIVE AN EMAIL ABOUT MY ITEMS BEING OVERDUE?

Courtesy notices are sent out when items remain checked out past their due date.

If you have not yet returned your item(s), you can do so through our external drop boxes, which are open 24/7 at Clemens Mill, Hespeler, Preston, and Queen’s Square. For more information, see our guidelines on Returning Materials.

WHY AM I BEING ASKED TO LIMIT THE LENGTH OF MY VISIT?

Idea Exchange is committed to ensuring the wellbeing of our members and staff with enhanced safety rules and cleaning procedures.

All precautions (as noted above) are based on the recommendations of Public Health and Government officials, including the requirement that all members and staff wear a face mask or covering, practice 2-metre physical distancing at all times, and limit the length of time spent in contact with one another.

For more information, please see available resources from Region of Waterloo Public Health, Government of Ontario, and the Government of Canada.

WHEN CAN I PICK UP MY HOLDS?

You will be notified by telephone or email when your item(s) are ready for pick up. After receiving this notification, you can stop in at any time during our open hours.

Sign-in to your library account at any time to check the status of your holds.

HOW DO I RETURN MY ITEMS?

External drop boxes are open 24/7 at Clemens Mill, Hespeler, Preston, and Queen's Square for returns.

Due to the removal of the quarantine regulations, items may also be returned in the internal drop boxes during open hours.

For more information, see our guidelines on Returning Materials.

 

CAN I BROWSE THE PHYSICAL COLLECTIONS?

Yes! You are able to browse our collections in-person at all locations. All collections are available to browse and staff assistance is available to help you select items. Holds can still be placed on these items by using the online library catalogue.

We are always here to help answer your questions or suggest a new read, something to watch or listen to. Call or email us your question or chat with us during open hours.

HOW LONG CAN I BORROW ITEMS?

Seven (7) days have been added to loan periods. 1-day loan materials, such as new DVDs, have been extended to 14 days. These extended loan periods give you more time with the item(s) and if you wish to to isolate your checked-out materials at home. Idea Exchange is no longer quarantining returned items based on updated regulations from the provincial government.

For more information about loan periods and renewals, please see our Borrowing guidelines.

CAN I PRINT A DOCUMENT?

Printing, photocopying, scanning, and faxing is available. You can also print via Wi-Fi at all locations.

Debit/credit payments are encouraged, but cash will be accepted.

Black and White printing: 25 cents per printed side
Cost for Colour printing: 50 cents per printed side

At this time, there is only limited staff assistance available, as everyone must maintain physical distancing at all times. Need more help? Call us or ask us online.

CAN I USE ONLINE RESOURCES WITHOUT ENTERING THE BUILDING?

By signing up for an Online Membership (Cambridge residents only) you can immediately start accessing our Online Resources. Visit an Idea Exchange location for a full membership.

If you already have a card but need it renewed, fill out our Membership Renewal Form.