Library suggestions

If you would like to make a suggestion please fill out our online feedback form or stop by the library to fill out a paper form

Thank you for your support!

Note: Anonymous suggestions are welcomed but are not guaranteed to receive a public response.

Suggestions and responses for September/October 2019

Item Suggestion and response
1 “Can the library card be an automatic pop-up like the ‘wallet’ in apple phone?” – Anonymous 9/12/19
  RESPONSE: That is a good suggestion! I’m pleased to inform you that we already offer a mobile app with this feature. The app is available for iOS or Android. Go to your app store, search for “Menlo Park Library” and install the app. Open the app and login with your library card, then select ‘My Library Card’ to display your library card’s barcode on your phone. If you need additional assistance, we’re happy to help you at the Library Information Desk, or by email at, or by calling 650-330-2520. –Sean 
2 “I can hardly think of a dumber idea for a library to situate ESL meeting in the quiet section of the library. It is distracting for me and I imagine others when 2 people carry on a 1 hour conversation. Can’t you move the ESL stations to a reasonably isolated and noisier section of the library. It is a fundamentally inconsiderate thing for people to do at a library. I might as well pull my iPhone out and play music for everyone to hear.” – Stuart W. (contact info provided) 9/6/19
  RESPONSE: Thanks for your message. I'm sorry to hear that you had an unsatisfactory visit to the library. We're constantly trying to strike a balance between providing learning opportunities for the community as well as quiet spaces for reading and contemplation. This is sometimes challenging due to the library building's limitations which include a lack of adequate meeting rooms and enclosed study spaces. The areas near the front of the library where the ESL activities place tend to have more foot traffic and passersby and thus naturally have more incidental noise, which is one reason why the ESL activities are located there. The quieter areas of the library tend to be found in the back reaches of the building amid the book stacks. These areas have ample seating and are recommended for library visitors who want a quieter library experience. I hope this is helpful. Please contact me again should you have any questions or concerns. Thank you. –Sean
3 “Need more e-Library tips sessions – patron feedback.” – SR (staff) 9/1/19
  RESPONSE: You’re right, it has been awhile! We have more sessions planned for January and February. But you can always bring in your device any time we are open and get assistance from staff at the Info desk right then and there – we are happy to help. –Nick
4 “Patron feedback – shelving from Ma – Mc – Mac – etc is really confusing! What is official policy re: alphabetizing this area? Also: signs?” – SR (staff) 9/1/19 
  Response: Thanks for this feedback. We have rearranged some areas of the library to improve sightlines and make the area generally more welcoming and attractive. The amount and variety of seating in the library has increased overall, including the amount of seating located close to the lobby. For patrons who need or want seating as close to the lobby as possible, the first floor Study Zone area (next to and behind the elevator) is a good option. –Sean
5 “Incorporate an honor system to bring money back tomorrow when you don’t have the cash.” – Anonymous 9/18/19  
  RESPONSE: Thank you for the suggestion, however we have no way to accept or track ‘honor system’ payments in a manner that would conform to our financial accounting and audit requirements. –Sean   
6 “Would it be possible to designate a quiet space for staff to work? Would be great to have laptops w/ access to the network drive, printers, email, etc. Thanks” – Polly (staff) 9/20/19
  RESPONSE: Good suggestion. We’re exploring options to create more enclosed meeting and study spaces in the library for public use, and will do the same for the staff areas. –Sean 
7 “1) Please add more mysteries. 2) Please consider a suspense/thriller subsection in the new books. Many of your new fiction books could be considered mysteries/thrillers/suspense.” –Anonymous 9/20/19  
  RESPONSE: We constantly assess our collections and try to make popular items available. We also strive to make things easier for our users to find. Mysteries are one of our most popular collections – we’re glad you are enjoying them! We are purchasing more mysteries to keep up with the demand. We have not yet broken out suspense and thriller fiction into a separate section, but we will keep an eye on it. –Nick
8 “A patron suggested we install a plaque on our carved benches to give credit to the artist.” – Polly (staff) 9/20/19
  RESPONSE: That is a great idea! We will try to make it happen. –Sean 
9 “I cannot tell you how excited I am to read that our library, here in Menlo park, can now access books from all over the state of CA. It is a tremendous service to your patrons and I am so excited and proud of this library and this library system for having instituted this wonderful, wonderful service. I am already an avid user of the Menlo Park library. In fact one of the things I tell people about my wonderful new apartment here in California is that I am walking distance from the library.” – Barbara F. 10/4/19
  RESPONSE: Thanks for your kind message. I'm glad to hear that you're happy with our LINK+ interlibrary loan service! I agree, it's a great resource that ensures all Menlo Park residents can get access to and borrow virtually any book they want relatively quickly. –Sean
10 “My wife and I have donated over 1,000 books to the Library these last several months. The big, locked post that blocks the small driveway to the book donation area is really quite a pain. We have to park in the street, which might not seem much further away, but after you’ve lugged 6 or 8 heavy cartons it really is… I really wish you’d get rid of it, or at least authorize a staffer to unlock it on request.” – Peter 10/7/19
  RESPONSE: Thanks for your message. The post to which you refer was installed to prevent cars from parking on or pulling across the sidewalk in that area. It's my understanding that there were a few near-misses with cars almost hitting pedestrians and bikes, which prompted the installation. We very much appreciate all that you and your wife have done and given to support the library. We're happy to provide rolling carts for moving boxes of donated books into the library – just buzz at the back door and we'll gladly provide them. –Sean  
11 “I was visiting Menlo Park Library in September and had an opportunity to spend time with mothers of pre-school children and discussed the library services. Of the five mothers with whom I spoke, all five talked about the negative attitude of the staff in the children’s library. The mothers were disappointed with how they and their children were treated during their library visits. The mothers agreed that the librarians were distant, emphasizing rules rather than providing a pleasant learning experience for their children. All of the mothers regretfully admitted they have been taking their children to the Redwood City children’s library where the staff is child friendly and welcome children’s visits. Another difficulty for parents is that the Menlo Park children’s programs are arranged such that if a parent misses one day for whatever reason, sickness, etc., he or she and the child are dropped from the rest of the program. That also makes the Redwood City library a much more favorable library to Menlo Park parents.” – Therese G., Elmhurst IL. 10/4/2019
  RESPONSE: We're sorry that you were disappointed with your library visit. We understand your frustration, and do our best to make the room safe and pleasant for all of the people using it. As our Children's Room gets busier, and more and more children and families are using it, we've needed to be very consistent in helping patrons to understand and follow our safety policies, especially in regards to walking instead of running. Our need to remind patrons of the rules may seem as though we're distant and unfriendly, but there could be a baby or toddler around any of the blind corners in the room, and we take responsibility for maintaining a safe environment for all of the children in the room. For our storytime sessions, we have a long waiting list for each of our month-long sessions, so we ask that patrons give us a call when they're unable to attend. That way we know that they still want the slot, and we hold it for them. If we don't hear from them, we send them an email asking them to let us know if they would like us to hold the slot. We let them know that if we don't hear from them, we will allow someone from the waiting list to take that slot. This helps us provide our storytime sessions to as many of our patrons as possible. Thank you for giving us your feedback, and we will continue to evaluate our policies and strive to give the best possible service to our community. –Jennifer
12 “I have some comments on the new layout of the main library. I don’t like the new location for picking up items on hold. The reason we put items on hold is so that I can pick them up easily. Now I have to go further into the library to find them. The videos are inconvenient. Most of the people looking for these are not comfortable looking down on the floor level to find them. You literally have to get down on your knees to see them. I’m not even elderly, and it’s uncomfortable for me. Please consider not using the lowest shelf for these. Thank you.” John D. 10/14/19
  RESPONSE: Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts and concerns. Regarding the holds, we ran out of room in the previous location due to the high volume of holds coming in. We identified a new location with more room across from the information desk, where library team members are available to assist with finding holds. We also installed a new self-checkout machine next to the information desk so items can be checked out near where they are picked up. Regarding the videos on the bottom shelf, we’re in the process of shifting our collections in order to make room for videos without using the bottom shelf. That project should be completed and the videos moved off the bottom shelf by the end of the year. –Sean