Library Extends Monday Hours

July 18, 2012

Chicago Public Libraries will extend their hours on Monday mornings, according to an annoucement from the city. The city says it reallocated staff to allow it to open the neighborhood branches on Mondays.

The Monday morning is expected to be used by families pursuing early literacy programs at the neighborhood branches, the release says.

In a study of library statistics, The Bulldog found that while the Harold Washington Main Branch has seen a slight uptick in service use year over year, neighborhood branches vary widely.

The Sulzer branch, for example, has seen year over year growth of more than 14 percent in visitors. For the five months ended in May, Sulzer visitors were more than 227,000. In 2011 the branch had about 199,000 visitors.

The new branch at Budlong Woods saw a decrease of more than 11 percent in visitors in 2012. That branch reported more than 67,000 visitors in the first five months, versus 77,000 in the first five months of 2012.

In the report on eight neighborhood libraries and the main branch, Bezazian stood out with a more than 42 percent increase in circulation. The eight neighborhood libraries each saw an increase in circulation, despite the shorter hours imposed on the branches this year. Only the Harold Washington location showed a decrease in circulation, of 1.62 percent year over year for the first five months.

In a year when decreased hours had a significant impact on nearly every branch metrics, Sulzer stood out, defying a trend of fewer computer hours, to post a more than 42 percent increase in computer use.

Sulzer had installed new terminals, removing stacks in the effort.

A few other factoids, visitors to Sulzer, Harold Washington and Independence were most likely to use computers. Budlong, Bezazian and Albany Park users least likely to use computers.

Visitors at Independence check out an average of about 1.2 books, while visitors to Harold Washington check out about .6 books. Uptown residents check out an average of just .7 books per visit.

The top ten fiction titles at CPL? (According to a CPL report)

  1. Fifty Shades of Gray by E L James
  2. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
  3. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
  4. Gold Boy, Emerald Girl by Yiyun Li
  5. The Innocent by David Baldacci
  6. Calico Joe by John Grisham
  7. Fifty Shades Darker by E L James
  8. Guilty Wives by James Patterson
  9. 11th Hour by James Patterson
  10. The Paris Wife: A Novel by Paula McLain


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