Eric Litschel, adult services associate at Cleveland Heights–University Heights Public Library (CHUHPL), loads up his bike and heads out to deliver books. It is the Book Bike Program begun in 2013 and was a pilot program scheduled to last for just that year. With volunteers and enthusiastic readership, it is still going strong.
Riding a “custom-made Haley cargo tricycle” the bike has dozens of book that will be given away at local events and has become a rolling checkout desk. With a small computer, and upgraded software library patrons can use their cards to check out books from the bike-mobile.
The library has recently partnered with OverDrive (library services provider) to turn the ‘tablet and bike’ into a complete rolling library. Funding for the project comes from the library friends group and state grants. It also utilizes volunteer librarians, and patron volunteers. The bikes which are really customized tricycles cost around $2000 each.
The biggest obstacle according to Eric Litschel, is getting used to riding the tricycle loaded with books and navigate city traffic. Communities and library wanting more information can follow this link for details.