Frequently Asked Questions
Everyone has at least a few questions about the library! Read on for answers to some of the queries we hear most:
Where can I park and how much does it cost?
Parking is available on the street at parking meters and at the Chester Street Parking garage. Parking is free in the garage for the first two hours. All parking on Sunday is free.
Can I get change?
Yes. Change is available at the Circulation Desk.
What is your food and drink policy? Where can we eat our lunch?
We do allow covered beverages and finger foods in the Library; however, we do not allow food or drink
around public computers or in the Idea Lab. You are welcome to eat your lunch on the benches in the
lower level, on the front steps of the Library or in neighboring Shain Park.
Do you have vending machines?
Yes. We have a coffee machine, beverage machine and snack machine on our lower level. Prices range from $.75 to $3.
Do you provide notary services?
We do not have a notary public on staff. The local UPS store has notary services available for a small fee.
How do I find out what my Library PIN is?
Call the Circulation Desk at 248-554- 4630 and provide the staff member with your library card number, and he or she will give you your PIN.
Can another person use my library card?
Yes. If a person is holding your library card, they can use it to check out materials. If you would like to authorize a family member to pick up your holds, you must contact the Circulation Department and fill out a written consent form.
Why is a toy still on my account even though I returned it?
We examine, clean and check-in toys Monday through Friday, but it may take us a few days to review everything. Your item will be checked in on the date it was returned.
If my child goes to a Birmingham Public School, can we get a library card?
Students who live in Birmingham, Beverly Hills, Bingham Farms and the City of Bloomfield Hills are eligible for a library card. Students in the Birmingham Public School District who do not live in our service area should obtain a library card from their home library, which can then be registered for reciprocal use at Baldwin. All BPS students are encouraged to use their library cards at Baldwin during our Battle of the Books, Birbery and Summer Reading programs.
Can I use my card at another library?
Your Baldwin card isn’t just welcome in Birmingham, you’ll enjoy check-out privileges at other local libraries, too.
Can I return my library materials to another location?
Although you are welcome to return items to other libraries in The Library Network, please allow up to two weeks for the item to be removed from your account. We will honor the date it was returned.
There is an item on my account that I am certain I returned. Who do I contact?
If you find an item on your account that you returned, please call Circulation at 248-554- 4630 or visit the Circulation Desk during your next visit. We will do a “claims returned search” for the item, then, during the next month, our staff will search our shelves to try and locate the item. Before contacting the library, please double-check your home and car, looking closely under furniture and car seats.
How do I get a library card?
Read all about how to get a library card here.
Can I use a card from another library at Baldwin?
If you live in a different city not serviced by Baldwin, but are interested in checking out Library materials, you may be able to use your own card. Read more here.
How many items can I check out?
We don’t limit our Baldwin cardholders to a maximum number of materials checked out, except in a few cases as noted below. All other cardholders are limited to a maximum of eight (8) items at a time.
The following materials limits apply to all cardholders:
Holiday books (limit of 6)
Toys (limit of 1 per child)
Puppets (limit of 2 per child)
Video games (limit of 2)
Can I place a hold if I have a card from another library?
No, holds are available for Baldwin cardholders only.
How long can I keep a HotPicks Book/DVD/Blu-Ray? Can I renew it?
View our list of loan periods and renewals on our Borrowing Information page
How do I check out a toy?
We offer a wide variety of educational toys for checkout. To select a toy, visit the Youth Services Reference desk and ask for the toy you’d like. Each toy is numbered. You can browse our available toys online here, or view our binder of toys.
Do you have rooms available to rent?
We do! Learn more about our available rooms, pricing and availability on our Room Rental page
How do I get access to a study room?
The study rooms are available for use by Baldwin Public Library cardholders only. Both single individuals and groups are allowed to use our study room. If a group wishes to use a room, at least one person in the group must have a BPL card. The rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis and cannot be reserved in advance. There is a two-hour time limit for room use, which is generally only enforced if people are waiting. Those wishing to use a room must present a valid BPL card to the librarians at the Adult Services desk, and sign in on the sign-in sheet with their name and the time they begin using the room. There is no fee for using the rooms.
Do you proctor exams, and if so, how much does it cost and how does it work?
Baldwin offers this service daily during our regular business hours, and will even work directly with your academic institution to accommodate your requirements. The cost for proctor services is $20 per day for Birmingham, Beverly Hills, Bingham Farms and Bloomfield Hills residents, and $30 per day for non-residents. Proctoring is available by appointment only. Make yours by calling Paul Gillin at 248-554-4683 or via email at Paul.Gillin@baldwinlib.org
What is the charge for printing?
Color printing fees are $1.00 per page
Black and white printing is $0.15 per page
Do you have a public fax machine, and if so, how much does it cost?
We do have a public fax machine available for patron use. It costs $1.00 per page to send a fax.
Do you have a typewriter for public use?
Yes, we have an electronic typewriter available. Just visit the Adult Services reference desk for information or to use it.
How do I connect to your WiFi?
When is your next book sale?
Book sales happen every May and November at the Library, offering great opportunities to pick up wonderful titles at a great price. Learn more about the sales on the Book Sales page
Where can I donate textbooks? Encyclopedias? VHS? Records? Magazines?
The Friends of the Baldwin Public Library does not accept these types of materials. Many art teachers and scouting troops use magazines for art projects and welcome these types of donations. Flipside Records in Clawson buys used records; and textbooks and encyclopedias may be recycled at SOCRRA in Royal Oak.
Monday - Thursday
9:30am - 9:00pm
Friday & Saturday
12:00pm - 5:00pm
Baldwin Public Library
300 W. Merrill St.
Birmingham, MI 48009
Check Out Our Digital Services
Baldwin has thousands of titles that you can watch, read, and listen to on your computer or mobile device - all without having to set foot in the library.
March 20 Books: Duel to the Death by J. A. Jance – After taking down the man responsible for his best friend’s death, Stuart Ramey thinks the case is finally closed. That is, until Stu finds himself left with a multimillion dollar fortune in Bitcoin in a...read more
To help families foster a love for reading in their young children, the Baldwin Public Library is launching “1,000 Books before Kindergarten.” Studies show that families that start reading aloud to their children at birth help strengthen their language skills, build...read more
On Saturday, February 10, nearly 1,500 elementary students and parents packed the Seaholm gymnasium on a snowy morning for the Baldwin Public Library’s second Battle of the Books. The goal of the friendly competition is to encourage the love of reading....read more
2 Hours Free Parking in Chester Street Deck.
Metered street parking around Library
Free Parking on Sundays
Monday to Thursday
9:30 am - 9:00 pm
Friday and Saturday
9:30 am - 5:30 pm
12:00 pm - 5:00pm
April 1 - Easter
May 26-28 - Memorial Day Weekend
July 4 - Independence Day
September 1-3 - Labor Day Weekend