Progress Edition

Mid-Columbia Library: Online or in person, the library works for you

3D rendering of a remolded West Richland Library.
3D rendering of a remolded West Richland Library. Courtesy Bernardo|Wills Architects PC

At Mid-Columbia Libraries (MCL), we invite you to access the thousands of downloadable and streaming eBooks, eMagazines, eAudiobooks and movies, and see how your library can easily integrate into your busy schedule.

Earlier this year, MCL launched the popular on-demand film streaming service Kanopy, offering what the New York Times calls, “a garden of cinematic delights.” Kanopy showcases more than 30,000 of the world’s best films, including award-winning documentaries, rare and hard-to-find titles, film festival favorites, indie and classic films, foreign language films, and films on race and current affairs, with collections from The Great Courses, PBS and many more.

We recently improved our digital magazine service and now offer 50 magazine titles you can enjoy across multiple devices. Titles available include everything from The Oprah Magazine to ESPN. Readers living in MCL’s service area can now quickly gain access to MCL’s digital collection using their mobile phone number. Once validated for a digital library card, customers can access thousands of downloadable eBooks and eAudiobooks, in both English and Spanish, for free. These new products complement one of the biggest eBook and eAudiobook collections in Eastern Washington. We offer 24/7 access to more than 94,000 downloadable eBooks and eAudiobooks making our digital branch one of our most heavily used in the system with 493,711 digital item checkouts in 2018.

We understand the value our residents place on the physical library experience, which is why MCL has continued to remodel the branches throughout our system. MCL has proudly served the West Richland community since 1978. The current library opened to the public in 1996, and, as you might expect, the building was in need of a remodel. The project started in late 2018 when we moved library services to a temporary location in December and began remodeling the branch in January 2019.

The cost of the project is estimated at $306,953. Once it is reopened, customers can expect an increased collection with thousands of new items in addition to the current collection valued at $638,250. Thanks to the generosity of Columbia Center Rotary, customers can also look forward to a new storytime area with an improved children’s collection. I invite you to visit Mid-Columbia Libraries’ West Richland Branch, reopening in April 2019, and to see firsthand another example of the investment your public library system is making in our region.

2018 saw the largest amount of checkouts in the history of our library system. If one of the over two million checkouts wasn’t by you or your family, I invite you to visit us at any one of our 12 branches in the system to get your library card or visit us online to quickly get a digital library card.

In 2019, we build on our commitment to quality, engaging and family-friendly programs and events, with regular author visits and literary events scheduled throughout the year. Storytime, including bilingual storytimes, has been and always will be the central point of our programming. The annual Summer Reading Challenge will begin on June 1, and MCL has an exciting lineup of activities and performances all summer, including a glow hike on Badger Mountain, live reptiles at the library, and concerts by popular children’s bands Recess Monkey and Lucky Diaz. Please check our events calendar at for the events and storytimes near you, and do not forget to follow us on Facebook to stay up to date on all of our activities.

Your library staff remains enthusiastic and sincere in our commitment to enhance our quality of life across Benton, Franklin, and Adams counties. We continually look for ways to improve our collection, our programs, and our responsiveness to you.