Libraries use cargobikes to become more user friendly


It is not just the Helsinki Main Library that uses cargobikes to bring books to its target audience; (see report on Christiania Bikes UK).

Grist reports:

Libraries in cities like Seattle, Denver, Portland, and Tucson are combining paper and bicycles to bring books to the masses.

[Following pioneering work by Gabriel Levinson in Chicago and Laura Molton in Portland,] in 2012, Tucson librarian Karen Greene got on board launching Pima County Public Library’s traveling Bookbike. In its first year, the Bookbike distributed more than 11,000 books to area residents. As Greene told Arizona Public Media:

The Bookbike is an adult, three-wheeled tricycle that has a specially-created box in the front. When you open it up, it has bookshelves and it can hold hundreds of books. We take the Bookbike out to different locations to give away the books, to give away library cards, to give out information about library programs and literacy projects, as well as bike maps and bike programs.

And just last week, the Denver Public Library joined the pedal party, introducing DPL Connect, “a pedal-powered mobile library and wi-fi hotspot.” The “tricked-out trike” tailors its books to its location, such as carrying cookbooks to give away at a farmers market. Thanks to DPL Connect, people can download audio books and ebooks, sign up for a library card, get help with research, and get book recommendations.

Two days ago, the Seattle Public Library snagged the attention of NPR for its pilot Books on Bikes program. Books on Bikes staffers register people for library cards, sign kids up for summer reading programs, and inform parents about story time in their neighborhood.


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