Revised COVID-19 Measures at Libraries and Archives from 16 May to 13 June 2021

Singapore, 15 May 2021 – In line with the latest measures to minimise the spread of COVID‑19 in the community, we will reduce the operating capacity in our libraries and archives (the National Library, our 26 public libraries[1], the National Archives of Singapore and the Former Ford Factory) from the current 50 per cent to 25 per cent. This will take effect from Sunday, 16 May 2021. We will also implement timed entry and suspend all physical programmes, including tours, and operations of our makerspaces (MakeIT at Libraries), to ensure that public health and safety are not compromised.

2          The duration of stay in our premises for each patron will be reduced as we reintroduce the timed entry system, on both weekdays and weekends. Patrons can visit the National Library, the Study Lounge at Level 5 of the National Library Building, and the National Archives of Singapore for up to two hours, and one hour in all other public libraries and at the Former Ford Factory. Patrons will be required to make advance online bookings at for their preferred slots. Patrons can check or the NLB mobile app ( for real-time crowd capacity in our libraries and archives before visiting.

3          To encourage patrons to read and learn from home, the loan period for physical library materials borrowed between 16 May and 31 July will be doubled to six weeks, up from the current three weeks. Patrons will also be able to renew these materials for a further six weeks, up from the current three weeks. This can be done easily via the NLB mobile app (, before the library materials are due. Additionally, patrons with unreturned physical library materials that are due on or after 16 May will have their due dates extended to 11 July.

4          The audience capacity for Asian Film Archive’s public screenings at Oldham Theatre (at level 3 of the National Archives of Singapore) will likewise be reduced from 50 to 33 persons for both the theatre and the atrium. Safe distancing measures will continue for seating in the theatre and to limit intermingling between groups. There will be one to two screenings per screening day at the Oldham Theatre. Digital programmes will continue to be available for patrons. More information can be found at

5          To ensure the safety of our patrons, safe distancing measures, capacity controls and frequent disinfection of high touch points will continue to be implemented across all our premises. Patrons who visit our facilities must wear their masks at all times and adhere to the capacity limits in our facilities. Please refer to the Annex for details on the services available at our facilities. 

[1] The Choa Chu Kang Public Library is currently closed for renovations and will open in the second half of 2021.