Frequently asked questions


Gradual Reopening of BAnQ facilities

Top Are BAnQ's facilities open?

As in every other indoor or partially covered public space, masks or face coverings must be worn in all BAnQ facilities.

BAnQ is gradually resuming operations at its various locations.

Click here to find out the latest on what's happening at the Grande Bibliothèque.

Staff members at the province's 10 archives centres, at BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie and at the National Collection will process research requests by telephone and email. If your research project requires it, you can request an appointment. Appointments with a research assistant take place in the BAnQ reading rooms, which are otherwise closed.

Gradual reopening of the Grande Bibliothèque

Top Is the Grande Bibliothèque open?

The Grande Bibliothèque is once again open to the public. However, for now, it is not providing the usual services. 

Currently, at the Grande Bibliothèque, you can:

  • pick up materials that you previously placed on hold and that are ready for you;
  • return borrowed materials;
  • join BAnQ;
  • access the stacks;
  • use the computer stations and photocopiers/scanners;
  • speak to a librarian about your research project;
  • speak to a Services Québec officer;
  • take part in activities (see the calendar for details).

You can also make an appointment to:

In order to limit contact as well as the number and duration of visits, these are the only activities currently permitted at the Grande Bibliothèque.

At any one time, no more than 250 people may be present in the Grande Bibliothèque. Patrons are requested to ensure their visit lasts a maximum of 60 minutes.

For everything else, our staff and our digital services continue to be available online, by email and by phone.

Top What are the Grande Bibliothèque's opening hours?

For now, the Grande Bibliothèque is open:

  • Tuesday to Friday: from 10 am to 8 pm
  • Saturday and Sunday: from 10 am to 5 pm

The library and its phone services are closed Mondays.

Note that these opening hours are temporary.


Top How do I access the Grande Bibliothèque during the gradual reopening period?

  • Patrons must enter the Grande Bibliothèque through the door on de Maisonneuve Blvd;
  • Patrons must leave through the door leading onto Berri St;
  • The entrance via the Metro remains closed until further notice, as well as the Savoie–Saint-Denis and Jardin d'art–Ontario St. entrances.
  • The Grande Bibliothèque's parking is open. Once they have parked, patrons must go outside and enter the library though the door on de Maisonneuve Blvd.

At any one time, no more than 250 people may be present in the Grande Bibliothèque. Patrons are requested to ensure their visit lasts a maximum of 60 minutes.

Top Which on-site services are currently available?

  • Joining BAnQ;
  • Borrowing materials;
  • Returning materials;
  • Accessing the stacks;
  • Using computer stations;
  • Using photocopiers/scanners;
  • Speaking to a librarian about your research project;
  • Speaking with a Services Québec officer;
  • Using the digital manufacturing equipment at Le Square (by appointment; page is in French, appointment can take place in English);
  • Accessing the National Collection's heritage materials (by appointment);
  • Some cultural activities (see the calendar in French);
  • The BAnQ Boutique, from Tuesday to Friday from 10 am to 6 pm, and Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm;
  • Le Parva Bistro, from Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 4 pm.

In order to limit contact as well as the number and duration of visits, these are the only activities currently permitted at the Grande Bibliothèque.


How can I join?

Enter the Grande Bibliothèque through the door on de Maisonneuve Blvd. Have a recent, valid piece of ID and proof of residence (digital or paper copy) ready. View the list of accepted documents. Subscriptions are valid for 2 years.

I've filled out the online services subscription form and I would like to borrow materials at the Grande Bibliothèque. Where can I get my library card?

Enter the Grande Bibliothèque through the door on de Maisonneuve Blvd. Have a recent, valid piece of ID and proof of residence (digital or paper copy) ready. View the list of accepted documents. Subscriptions are valid for 2 years.

My library card has expired. How do I renew my subscription? Can I do it by phone?

All subscriptions that have expired between March 1 and December 31, 2020 have been automatically extended by a 2-year period.

Subscriptions that have expired before March 1, 2020, but for less than 2 years, can be renewed by phone under certain conditions. If  you are in this situation, please call 514 873-1100 or 1 800 363-9028, option 2, during opening hours, to check if your subscription can be renewed by phone.

If your card has been expired for over 2 years, enter the Grande Bibliothèque through the door on de Maisonneuve Blvd, with a recent, valid piece of ID and proof of residence (digital or paper copy). View the list of accepted documents.

My library card has expired. Can I still access the available online resources?

Yes. Exceptionally, access to online services is maintained for subscribers whose cards have expired.

Can I subscribe to online services without having to go to the Grande Bibliothèque?

Yes. Just fill out this form to send a subscription request.

Subscribers with a library card automatically have access to online services.

I've joined BAnQ, but I don't have my client number or password to access the online resources. Is there a way to recover them?

Yes. Just fill out this form.

If you have your client number, but not your password, please fill out the password recovery form or call 514 873-1100 or 1 800 363-9028, option 2, for staff assistance, during the library'sopening hours.

Can I browse the library's materials and sit down to read my selection?

You can definitely browse and select the materials you wish to borrow. Unfortunately, you cannot sit down and read at this time.

Can I use the self-checkout stations?

Yes, the self-checkout stations are located near the service desks on each level of the library.

Can I borrow books, movies, CDs or magazines from the Grande Bibliothèque?

Yes. However, to shorten your visit, you can also have your item(s) placed on hold. Read the Borrow materials by placing them on hold page.

What is the loan period for materials?

Until further notice, all materials, including movies, are loaned for 21 days.

Can I pick up an item placed on hold by a friend or relative?

Yes. You can pick up materials placed on hold by a friend or relative if you have the item's reservation code.

Can I place a hold on an available library item?

Yes. Read the Borrow materials by placing them on hold page.

I have library items that I haven't returned yet. Can I still place a hold on another item?

Yes. You can place a hold on up to 15 items at a time, including 10 movies or TV series. The maximum number of items you can borrow is 35.

I cannot come and pick up my reserved materials. What should I do?

Please delete your request by logging in to My account or by calling 514 873-1100 or 1 800 363-9028, option 2.

Until further notice, no fines will be charged for failing to pick up an item.

I placed a hold on an available library item but it's not in my reservations list anymore. What happened?

A number of reasons can explain why we cannot find the item you requested even if it is displayed as available in the catalogue. If that is the case, a request cancellation notification will be displayed in the subscriber's account, in the "Messages" section.

I have materials to return. How does it work?

There are a number of ways to return borrowed materials.

  • The drop chutes located by the main entrance on de Maisonneuve Blvd are open 24/7.

  • During the opening hours of the Grande Bibliothèque, a contactless return station is available at the library's main entrance. Simply drop off your materials in the carts.

  • You can also return your materials to BAnQ's regional archives facilities. Please contact the facility in question before going there.

  • You may also return materials borrowed from the Grande Bibliothèque to any of the City of Montreal's library (list of libraries) or one of Quebec City's libraries (list of libraries). Because services are resuming gradually, it's possible that materials will remain

    The following items are not eligible for interlibrary returns:

    • CDs, DVDs, vinyl records, audiobooks and videocassettes;
    • Video games;
    • Materials borrowed through interlibrary loan;
    • Very large format items;
    • Rental best-sellers;
    • Multimedia kits such as language-learning methods;
    • Roadmaps or tourist attraction maps.
  • You can also mail your materials to the following address:

    Service de l'abonnement et de l'emprunt
    475 de Maisonneuve Blvd East
    Montréal, QC H2L 5C4

Please allow a minimum of 4 days before the return is recorded in your account because materials are set aside for up to 3 days before staff start handling them.

The self-service return terminals are currently off limits.

I returned a library item, but it is still displayed as borrowed in my account. What is that?

Because materials are set aside for up to 3 days before staff start handling them, you should allow a minimum of 4 days before the return is recorded in your account.

What is the loan period for materials?

Until further notice, all materials, including movies, are loaned for 21 days..

My borrowed materials are coming due and I cannot get to the library. Will I be charged late fees?

No. We have not been charging late fees since mid-March, nor will we be until further notice. Furthermore, you can now renew each borrowed item up to 3 times if it is not reserved by another user.

You may return materials borrowed from BAnQ to any the City of Montreal's library (list of libraries) or one of Quebec City's libraries (list of libraries). Because services are resuming gradually, it's possible that materials will remain recorded in your account for longer than usual. For now, and until further notice, no late fees will be charged.

You can also mail your materials at the following address:

Service de l'abonnement et de l'emprunt
475,  De Maisonneuve Blvd East
Montréal, QC H2L 5C4

Can I pay fines and fees charged to my account at the Grande Bibliothèque?

For health and safety reasons, the only fines that can be paid at the Grande Bibliothèque are for blocked accounts, and they can only be paid by credit or debit card. We suggest you use the online payment service in your subscriber's account.

I brought back my materials, but I received an overdue notice. Why is that?

Materials are set aside for 72 hours after you bring them back, so the overdue notice was sent before the materials were properly checked in. Don't worry: no late fees will be charged at the moment, until further notice.

The following equipment is once again available for patrons to use:

  • The computer stations on the ground floor, in the Espace Jeunes and on Level 2, for a maximum of 30 minutes per user per day;
  • The photocopiers/scanners on the ground floor;
  • The self-service pay stations on the ground floor;
  • The self-service loan stations on the ground floor and those located near the service desks on each level;
  • The catalogue stations located near the service desks on each level.

Can I speak to the on-site librarians and ask them questions?

Yes, you will find librarians at the reference desks on every level except the ground floor.

Can I talk to a Services Québec officer?

Yes, starting Tuesday, September 15, users can email services.quebec@banq.qc.ca to make a phone or Zoom appointment. Officers also provide employment assistance and government services on site, from Tuesday to Saturday, 10 am to noon and 1 pm to 5 pm.

Top Which on-site services are not currently available at the Grande Bibliothèque?

  • Reading newspapers
  • Worktables and armchairs
  • Group study rooms and study carrels
  • Loan of laptops and tablets
  • Group tours
  • Lockers
  • Café Parva (but the Bistro near the Auditorium is open)

Top What remote services are available?

  • Remote reference and information services
  • Service québécois du livre adapté (SQLA or adapted book service)
  • Services Québec (also on site)
  • Event programming (also on site)

Is the reference and information phone service back?

Yes, the reference and information phone service is once again available.

Can I use the Ask a Question form?

Yes. You can use the email information and reference services.

Is the adapted book service back?

Yes, the adapted book service is gradually resuming operations.

Orders can be placed through the catalogue or by calling 514 873-4454 or 1 866 410-0844.

When you receive your materials by mail, we recommend that you put them aside for 3 days. You can read them after this period. Please expect longer wait times for requested books due to delayed deliveries by Canada Post.

In accordance with public health authority guidelines, patrons cannot access the collections. Placing a hold on materials by phone or by email is required before showing up at the library. The reading room is off-limits.

Services offered:

  • Phone service and email service
    • Reference and research assistance
    • Reading suggestions
    • Support for downloading adapted digital books
  • Ordering and mailing materials
  • Joining BAnQ

Can I contact Services Québec officedrs during the gradual reopening phase of the Grande Bibliothèque?

Yes, you can email services.quebec@banq.qc.ca to make a phone or Zoom appointment with the Services Québec agents at BAnQ. Starting September 15, you can also book an in-person appointment at the library.

Are there on-site events at the Grande Bibliothèque?

Yes. However, BAnQ is also offering a number of cultural and computer literacy activities online. Please see the calendar of activities (in French).

Top What are the guidelines for visiting the Grande Bibliothèque?

In order to minimize health risks to patrons and staff:

  • As in every other indoor or partially covered public space, masks or face coverings must be worn in all BAnQ facilities.
  • Access to the library is limited to a single member of a family, whenever possible.
  • It is best not to bring your children with you.
  • Patrons experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19 or who have recently travelled abroad should postpone their visit to the library.
  • Patrons must respect social distancing floor markings.
  • Patrons must wash their hands at designated stations.
  • Patrons who are returning materials must deposit them in the designated carts.
  • Cash is not accepted.

Top What kind of measures are in place to protect patrons?

Various measures have been introduced to protect the health of patrons.

  • Materials returned by patrons are set aside for a 72-hour period.
  • New acquisitions are also set aside for 72 hours before being put back into circulation.
  • We limit the number of patrons inside the library at any one time.
  • Checks are carried out at the entrance of the building to ensure that patrons with COVID-19 symptoms do not enter the library.
  • Posters reminding everyone to respect social distancing measures and safety guidelines are displayed at the entrance and inside the building.
  • Floor markings ensure that patrons lining up inside and outside the building comply with distancing measures.
  • Employees ensure that patrons lining up comply with distancing measures.
  • All patron services employees wear masks or visors.
  • Physical barriers (clear partitions) have been installed at the service desks between staff and patrons, as well as between patrons themselves.
  • Surfaces are cleaned more frequently.
  • In accordance with a specific guideline issued by public health authorities and a recommendation by the technical association for the industry of building services, the amount of fresh air in the Grande Bibliothèque has been increased. The systems supplying the public and administrative sectors of the building also operate more frequently.

National Archives

Top What archival research services do the National Archives offer?

Remote reference and information services

While waiting for the full reopening of our reading rooms, our staff members are at your service to support you in your research endeavours.

Contact us with your needs by filling out this form or calling us. We will get back to you as soon as possible by email, phone or videoconference. We can assist you with your research and copy certain pages for you, if need be (in compliance with the Copyright Act and any other restrictions) if the documents that are of interest to you are not available online.

If your request pertains to a specific archives centre, you can also contact this centre directly.

In-house use of materials

If your research work requires it, we could schedule an appointment for you in one of our centres. This appointment would be arranged following an interview about your research with one of our staff members.

The reading rooms at the archives centres remain closed except for patrons who have made an appointment

Top Following an interview about my research, I got an appointment at one of the archives centres. What should I expect for my visit?

  • Wearing a face covering is mandatory. Researchers may remove it once they are seated at their designated place but will have to put it back on again if they move around.
  • Upon arrival, researchers are asked to store all personal belongings in a locker or another designated space.
  • Researchers are assigned a place according to the type of materials needed. We ask that, as far as possible, they refrain from leaving their seat.
  • Staff will make the required materials available to the researcher.
  • Access to library materials on the shelves is limited to authorized staff.
  • Researchers are not authorized to use shared equipment such as photocopiers, computers, etc.
  • Researchers are allowed to use viewing and scanning devices when it is the only way to access the materials. These devices are cleaned after each use.
  • Researchers may not use any of the various open-access research tools, such as kardex files or microfiche. Where possible, materials are scanned and given to researchers.
  • When archival and other heritage materials have been handled, they are set aside for a at least 24 hours before being put back into circulation.
  • Work stations are cleaned after each use.
  • E-payment is preferred.

Top What other National Archives services can I use?

Online resources

The Advitam research interface into the archives is accessible.

BAnQ also encourages its patrons to browse and use its digital services at banq.qc.ca, which they can use to remotely access its collections and archival holdings, borrow books in French or in English, read magazines and newspapers in French or in English, listen to music and watch videos.

Event programming

Are there any National Archives-related activities offered on BAnQ's web portal?

Many online activities are posted on BAnQ's web portal. Please see the calendar of activities (in French).

Digital copy services

Is it possible to place a document reproduction request?

Yes. Digital copy services have resumed. Please allow a longer wait time, due to high demand.

Donations and transfers

Do you still receive and process private archive donations?

Yes. However, visits to donor residences or offices, approval of new archival fonds and transportation of materials to our facilities are not possible in the short term. If need be, an archivist will email you to let you know the status of your request.

Do you still receive transfers of public archives?

BAnQ's archives centres have suspended the reception of archival materials, until further notice. However, BAnQ archivists can receive and process requests to change records retention schedules and to transfer public archives.

Support services for managing centralized and decentralized public archives

Can I send a request to change a records retention schedule?

Yes. You can complete and submit such a request.

Can I complete and submit a request to transfer public archives?

Yes. You can submit requests through the Advitam transactional tool. However, please note that these requests will not be processed until a later date, and that the documents cannot be sent to BAnQ during this period.

Can I ask an archivist a question?

Yes. You can contact an archivist by email or by phone. Municipal, health and education government departments are specifically asked to contact their regional BAnQ archivist. [PDF - 120KB]

Support and collaboration with the private archives community

When can I submit projects to the Private Archives Processing Support Program?

Projects can be submitted to this program between August 31 and October 2, 2020.

National Library

Top What services are now offered at BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie and the National Collection?

Remote reference and information services

While waiting for the full reopening of the National Collection and of BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie, our librarians are at your service to support you in your research projects.

Let us know what you need by filling out this form or by calling us. We will get back to you as soon as possible by email, phone or videoconference. We can assist you with your research and possibly copy certain pages for you (in compliance with the Copyright Act and any other restrictions), if the documents that interest you are not available online and cannot be borrowed from the Grande Bibliothèque's circulating collection.

In-house use of materials

Research requests at the National Collection and at BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie are first assessed and processed by phone and by email. If your research project requires it, we could schedule an in-person appointment onsite. To get one, simply write to collectionspatrimoniales@banq.qc.ca. The appointment will be made following an interview about your research with one of our staff members. The National Collection and the reading room at BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie remain closed except for patrons who have an appointment.

You should allow up to three working days from the date your request is received before receiving an appointment time and date. Your appointment request should include a list of the materials you want to view; these materials must not be available online nor be available for borrowing from the Grande Bibliothèque's circulating collection.

Appointment hours:

  • National Collection:

    • Tuesday, 10 am to 5 pm
    • Wednesday, 10 am to 8 pm
    • Thursday, 10 am to 5 pm
    • Friday, 10 am to 5 pm
    • Saturday, 10 am to 5 pm
  • BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie: Tuesday to Friday, from 1 pm to 5 pm

TopFollowing an interview about my research, I got an appointment at the National Collection or at BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie. What should I expect for my visit?

  • Wearing a face covering is mandatory. Researchers may remove it once they are seated at their designated place but will have to put it back on again if they move around.
  • Upon arrival, researchers are asked to store all personal belongings in a locker or another designated space.
  • Researchers are assigned a place according to the type of materials needed. We ask that, as far as possible, they refrain from leaving their seat.
  • Staff will make the required materials available to the researcher.
  • When materials have been handled, they are set aside for a at least 24 hours before being put back into circulation.
  • Workstations are cleaned after each use.

Top What other National Library services can I use?

Donations of published materials

Can I submit published materials as donations to BAnQ?

Yes. All submissions must be sent to achat@banq.qc.ca. Donations cannot be brought or sent directly to the facility.

Legal deposit

Can I ask questions or submit requests to the legal deposit service?

Yes. Questions and requests can be sent to depot@banq.qc.ca.

Can I submit the legal deposit of materials?

Yes, materials can be sent by mail to the following address:

Section du dépôt légal
BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie
Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec
2275, rue Holt
Montréal (Québec)
H2G 3H1

or brought in person to:

BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie, at 2275, Holt street, Montréal, or at one of BAnQ's archives facilities, except for BAnQ Vieux-Montréal.

Can I submit the deposit of digital publications?

Yes. Through the extranet. Send your questions by emailing pubelectro@banq.qc.ca.

ISBN request number

Can I request an ISBN number?

Yes. Through the extranet. Requests can also be emailed to isbn@banq.qc.ca and isbngouv@banq.qc.ca.

Bottin des éditeurs francophones canadiens (French-Canadian publishers directory)

Can I send change requests to the publishers' directory?

Yes. Address change requests and questions can be emailed to isbn@banq.qc.ca.

Cataloguing in Publication (CIP)

Can I take part in the CIP programme?

Yes. Just fill in the Cataloguing in Publication Information form (in French).

Event programming

Are there any National Library-related activities offered on BAnQ's web portal?

A great number of online activities are posted on BAnQ's web portal. Please see the calendar of activities (in French).

Digital copy services

Is it possible to place a document reproduction request?

Yes. Digital copy services have resumed. Longer wait times are expected due to high demand.

Useful general information

TopWhere?

Where is the Grande Bibliothèque and how can I get there?

Grande Bibliothèque: Map

Grande Bibliothèque

475, boulevard De Maisonneuve Est
Montréal (Québec) H2L 5C4

Phone: 514 873-1100 or
1 800 363-9028 (in Québec)
Fax: 514 873-9312

 

Berri-UQAM metro station
Buses: 15, 30 or 125

Paid parking (access from avenue Savoie and rue Berri)

Where is BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie located and how can I get there?

Preservation centre: Map

BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie

2275, rue Holt
Montréal (Québec) H2G 3H1

Phone: 514 873-1100
or 1 800 363-9028 (in Québec)
Fax: 514 873-7168

A parking lot located at the west end of the building is available to patrons free of charge.

Buses: 197, 94, 47, 27, 45, 10

Where are BAnQ's archives facilities?

See the BAnQ archives facilities section

TopWhen?

When is the Grande Bibliothèque open?

See the opening hours

When is BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie open?

Tuesday through Friday: 9 am to 5 pm
Monday: Closed

When are BAnQ's archives facilities open?

See the BAnQ archives facilities section

TopWho?

Who can use BAnQ's services?

All Québec residents have free access to BAnQ's services.

Is the Grande Bibliothèque accessible to persons with disabilities?

Yes, the Grande Bibliothèque facilitates accessibility by complying with recognized standards. It provides persons with disabilities with exceptional access to culture and information. It offers services, collections and equipment adapted to the various types of disabilities.

TopWhat?

What is Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec (BAnQ)?

BAnQ, which resulted from the merging of the activities of the Bibliothèque nationale du Québec and Archives nationales du Québec, is a library-science and archival cultural institution of national stature dedicated to the acquisition, preservation and promotion of Québec's published, archival and film heritage. BAnQ makes a public library available to all Quebecers by offering a vast universal collection.

More specifically, the institution has, as part of its mission, to assemble, preserve permanently and promote Québec's published heritage materials together with any related document of cultural interest, and materials relating to Québec that are published outside Québec. BAnQ also has, as part of its mission, to provide democratic access to the heritage materials constituted by its collections, and to culture and universal knowledge, and to act, in this regard, as a catalyst among Québec library and information institutions, thereby contributing to the personal development of Quebecers. Finally, BAnQ has, as part of its mission, to supervise, support and advise public bodies in the management of their current and intermediate archives, as well as to ensure the preservation of, facilitate access to, and foster the promotion of public archives.

What collections can be accessed at the Grande Bibliothèque?

In addition to the National collection, which comprises all materials published in Québec, the Grande Bibliothèque has a universal collection with over 4 million items, including 1.2 million books, 220 000 CDs and DVDs, and a vast collection of magazines, journals and newspapers from Québec and elsewhere. Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec (BAnQ) also makes an extensive and constantly expanding digital collection available to the public.

The Grande Bibliothèque's circulation and reference collection is divided into sections:

  • News and new releases
  • Arts and literature
  • Maps and plans
  • Science and technology
  • Economics and business, jobs and careers
  • History, geography and biographies
  • Social science and the humanities
  • Language
  • Music and film
  • Youth

BAnQ also makes adapted materials available for people with perceptual disabilities. 

What collections can be accessed at BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie?

BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie ensures the accessibility of the special collections that are part of the Québec heritage collection, namely:

  • Posters
  • Maps
  • Postcards
  • Prints
  • Documentary iconography
  • Early books
  • Artists' books and bibliophile books
  • Performing arts programmes
  • Art bindings
  • Art reproductions

What archival collections and fonds can be accessed in BAnQ's archives facilities?

The 10 BAnQ archives facilities house millions of items.

With more than 60 kilometers of written documents, namely the equivalent of approximately 185,000 archive boxes, 1,200,000 maps and plans, 18,700,000 graphical materials (photographs, postcards, prints, architectural and engineering drawings), and more than 78,000 films, videos and sound recordings, imagine everything there is to discover, read, see and hear about the history of Québec and the men and women who have shaped that history over close to four centuries.

What types of digitized materials are available in the digital collection?

Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec provides access via the Internet to digital versions of tens of thousands of Québec materials, including books, newspapers, music scores, fixed images of iconographic and cartographic items, sound recordings and government publications.

These digitized resources are augmented by dozens of electronic resources from Québec and elsewhere, in all disciplines.