Sutherland Shire Council says attendance levels at its recently reopened libraries at Sutherland and Caringbah are on the increase after long closures brought on by COVID-19 and renovation works.
The council closed its libraries back in March due to coronavirus restrictions, reopening Cronulla, Engadine and Menai libraries on June 22 when restrictions eased.
Both Caringbah and Sutherland libraries remained closed at the time, with the council explaining it had started renovation works to coincide with the enforced closure.
A council spokesman said customers had responded "incredibly positively" to the changes at Caringbah library since it reopened on July 16.
The revamp includes a new customer service desk and the creation of a plant wall at the library entrance.
He said changes at Sutherland library had also been welcomed by regular library users since it reopened on July 29.
Works include the removal of a number of internal walls and extensive reorganisation of the library's ground floor collection to give patrons "more access to natural light as they read and study".
"As part of the works, the public computer room on level one of the building has been expanded and a new quiet study space enclosed," the spokesman said.
"Full height local history pictures applied to the staircase walls provide a dramatic entrance to the first floor."
The spokesman said "patronage has been steadily increasing" at both libraries since they reopened, with staff commending library visitors on their "willing cooperation to new COVID safe sign-in procedures and the need to maintain social distancing and good hygiene while on site".
"Council wishes to thank all local residents for their patience during the COVID-19 closure period and while these renovation works have been completed," he said.
Bundeena, Miranda and Sylvania libraries remain closed due to the difficulty in adhering to a new requirement to quarantine all library returns, which would take up significant floor space.
Strict social distancing, hygiene and public record measures required under the state government's Public Health Order are now in place at Sutherland Shire Council libraries.
Details: For more information about Sutherland Shire Council's libraries click here.