Regional district building reopens, but libraries remain closed to public

The Thompson Nicola Regional District has reopened its building to the public by appointment only, with new safety protocols in place.

The office closed on March 18, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and staff have largely been working from home.

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Members of the public who need to attend the regional district building in person can phone 250-377-8673 to book an appointment. Appointments may be booked in half-hour time slots.

TNRD CAO Randy Diehl said Kamloops Art Gallery, which shares a building with the regional district at 465 Victoria St., will reopen in early July.

The two Kamloops libraries, however — one of which is located in the TNRD building — will remained closed for the time being.

“Libraries are full of people,” Diehl told KTW.

“They’re touching books, they’re touching computers, they’re touching desks. The interaction between people and staff is a whole different ball game.”

Meanwhile, library branches in locations throughout the region with lower population density may open sooner.

Diehl said the regional district is in discussions with provincial library systems, watching what is happening throughout British Columbia.

“The premier a few months ago said libraries, museums, art galleries can now open,” Diehl said.

“We looked at it and said, ‘Well, that’s nice. But with libraries, it’s not the same as a museum or the same as an art gallery.”

The province is expected to enter Phase 3 of reopening next week.

On Thursday, TNRD director and Kamloops city councillor Arjun Singh said that the public should be aware that with an anticipated second wave of novel coronavirus infections, there is potential for closing down facilities once more.

© Kamloops This Week



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