Parliament Sitting on 5 October 2020
QUESTION FOR WRITTEN ANSWER
25. Mr Don Wee: To ask the Minister for Communications and Information (a) what is the utilisation rate of NLB's book dispenser located at Lot One shopping mall; and (b) whether NLB will consider installing such book dispensers at the void decks of HDB rental blocks with higher densities of young families.
NLB is currently piloting the book dispenser at Lot One shopping mall, as a temporary replacement for the Choa Chu Kang Public Library (CCKPL), which is being revamped. With the book dispenser, patrons can borrow from a selection of curated books and collect reserved items. Between its launch on 17 July and 15 September 2020, the book dispenser has generated around 4,200 loans.
2. NLB will review the utilisation and cost effectiveness at the end of this pilot project when CCKPL reopens in 2021, before evaluating whether to deploy the book dispenser more widely. Any further deployment should complement the existing network of 26 public libraries across Singapore, which makes public libraries accessible for most Singaporeans. NLB also runs outreach programmes to bring library books to under-reached and under-privileged groups. In addition, reading corners have been set up in partner spaces such as Community Centres, Senior Activity Centres and Family Service Centres.