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Tours at Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh – Main (Oakland)

Tours and group visits of Main Library can now be booked using the form at the bottom of this page. Tour offerings will be limited, as we continue to restore programs and services to pre-pandemic levels.

Our experienced staff at CLP – Main Library are happy to work with you to customize a visit that is meaningful for your group. We can provide:

  • A tour of the building, highlighting departments of interest (click here to view a floor-by-floor layout of Main Library).
  • An overview of print and/or electronic resources in a particular subject area.
  • Catalog and database instruction.
  • Reference support to students or adult learners working on independent projects.
  • Group Borrowing (see details on Group Borrowing Cards below.)
  • Scavenger Hunt Bingo activity
  • Self-guided tours (see any Ask A Librarian desk for more information.)

Guidelines for Scheduling

At this time, tours and group visits will be limited to Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10:00-11:30 AM or 1:30-3:00 PM.
  • To ensure adequate library space and staffing, group visits must be scheduled at least two weeks in advance. To maximize your group tour experience, we will only schedule one group visit per day within the same time-frame. Unannounced group visits may not be accommodated with a full tour.
  • In order to provide an efficient and enjoyable experience during your visit, we require the following group sizes and chaperone-to-student ratios:
    • For groups whose members are in preschool through grade 12: No more than 25-30 members per group visit with at least one chaperone for every 15 students.
    • For college-age visits and above: No more than 30 members per group visit with at least one chaperone.
  • If you need to cancel the group visit for any reason, please notify the Library at least 24 hours in advance by emailing tours@carnegielibrary.org. In the event of a weather-related cancellation on the day of your visit, please call 412-578-2629 and provide your name, phone number, and name of the group visiting.

Library Cards

To provide the best visitor experience possible, CLP is pleased to offer your school or organization a Group Borrowing Card.  A Group Borrowing Card will offer the opportunity for your group to check out materials and access electronic resources that support your learning objectives while in the Library for your visit.  Library materials may be borrowed by everyone in the tour group with this single card and returned to any library in Allegheny County.

Basic Guidelines:

  • Group Borrowing Cards are good for 60 days. Re-activation for future visits may be requested as part of any future group tour requests.
  • All group tour visitors within Allegheny County are eligible for a Group Borrowing Card.
  • The organization may select up to five individuals accompanying the tour to have access to the account. To ease the check-out process during your visit any listed individual may use a photo ID or badge in lieu of the card to borrow on the account.

To obtain a Group Borrowing Card, fill out and return the following application prior to your scheduled visit. Your card will be available for pickup at the First Floor Customer Services desk.

Download the application here: Group Borrowing Card Application form.

If your tour group members would like to obtain their own individual library cards, information to do so can be found on the Get a Library Card page.

If you have questions or would like more information on library card access, call 412-622-3118.


Lunch

For groups that will be visiting the Library during lunchtime, it is recommended that shelf-stable food items be packed (staff can store on carts.) Groups of 25 or smaller may request a lunch space and will be accommodated if the space is not booked for a library program or community group.

Note: While group lunch space is limited within the Library, outdoor space near the building is available during warmer months (Schenley Tent or Sculpture Courtyard – see map below).


Parking and Bus Drop Off

The Library and Museums operate a six-level parking facility for cars and small vans. The lot is located directly behind the Museum and can be accessed from the intersection of Forbes Avenue and South Craig Street. Buses can park on Schenley Drive, in the bus lanes next to Phipps Conservatory.

Bus Drop Off Instructions

General Drop Off Instructions

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