Guideline UL-ADG01 Internal Guidelines for Library Closings

Main Policy Content


  • Purpose
  • Emergency Closings
    • Guidelines
  • Non-Emergency Closings
    • Guidelines


There are times when a library location needs to close. The reasons for the library closing can include planned closings for collection moves or unplanned closings due to weather or safety issues. All library users and employees may need to be informed of instances when a library location may be closed or a collection may be inaccessible. These guidelines are intended to provide a procedure for disseminating information regarding such closings to the University Libraries’ community.


Emergency closings may be due to weather, building problems, or other safety issues. The decision to close may come from various authorities depending on the location. Some locations will only be closed by a campus administrator or security personnel whereas other libraries may be closed on the authority of the Head Librarian. The Head Librarian at each location should determine who has the authority to close the library and select a contact person to disseminate information. 


  • A closing lasting less than one day does not require notification.
  • A closing lasting one day or more requires notification.
  • One person at each library should be designated as the contact person.
  • The Assistant to the Director of Commonwealth Campus Libraries is the person who will distribute all information regarding closings at all campuses.
  • The contact person should inform the Assistant to the Director of Commonwealth Campus Libraries (DCCL) of the library closing, including keeping them updated on continued closings.
  • The phone number of the Assistant to the DCCL is 814-863-5446. If you do not reach them, press “0” for immediate assistance or dial 814-865-0401 to speak to someone else in the office.
  • The Assistant to the DCCL will distribute the notification to all University Libraries’ employees via the global email list.
  • If a closing occurs during evening or weekend hours, the protocol normally followed by each location will be adhered to and no further notification is considered necessary.
  • The Assistant and/or Associate Deans, upon appropriate consultation, make decisions regarding closings at University Park and disseminate that information.  


Non-emergency closings may be due to a library move, collection maintenance, construction, or any other event that would affect collections or services.


  • Extended, planned closings require notification.
  • One person at each location should be designated as the contact person.
  • Depending on the circumstances of the closing, other departments may need to be contacted. The contact person and/or the Head Librarian should evaluate the situation and contact the following people/departments as necessary:
    • CAT - Locations should be made non-holdable only if collection will be inaccessible to staff and closing will be for more than one week.
      • Do not make locations non-holdable if the closing occurs over a break period.
      • Contact I-Tech or use the form <NOTE - form no longer exists, closing notification procedure has changed -> on the Intranet (if authorized) to make changes.
    • Hours web page:
      • Campus libraries – Update your library hours’ web page.
      • University Park locations – Contact the Head of Access Services to update the University Park Hours web page.
    • Receiving Room - Contact the Receiving Room at 814-863-4359, as necessary, for changes affecting receiving room.
      • May only be necessary in the event of a move of the collection or the service desk.
    • Lending Services/E-Z Borrow – Contact Lending Services at 814-865-5429, as necessary, for issues that affect lending services.
    • ILL/E-Z Borrow – Contact the Interlibrary Loan Department at 814-865-3480 as necessary for issues that will affect ILL and E-Z Borrow services in the closed location.
    • I-Tech – Contact I-Tech at 814-865-2378, as necessary for issues that will concern I-Tech services.
    • Digital Libraries Technology – Contact DLT at 814-865-1818, as necessary, for issues that will affect DLT equipment or services.
    • IDS (Interlibrary Delivery Service of Pennsylvania) – Contact by phone at (800) 770-4822 or email about IDS delivery.
  • The University Libraries and the public should be informed of the closing.

Effective Date: December 7, 2009
Date Approved: December 7, 2009 (Dean's Library Council)

Revision History (and effective dates):

  • December 7, 2009 -- New guideline

Last Review Date:  September 2010