Libraries by the Numbers

Massachusetts Public Libraries | By the Numbers*

More than 36 million residents visited Massachusetts’ 369 public libraries last year. In fact,  more people visit Massachusetts Public Libraries every year than attend entire seasons of the Red Sox, Patriots, Bruins and Celtics combined!

More than 53 million items were borrowed.

66,443,546 (digital and physical) available for checkout, up 38% in five years

170,891 programs held, up 31% in five years

3,250,554 people attended library programs, up 36% in five years

101,432 internet sessions every week

268,438 reservations of library meeting/community rooms, up 36% in five years

212,253 teens/young adults attended over 16,000 programs for designed for them, up 73% in five years

2,111,766 children and caregivers attended over 88,000 programs designed for them, up 27% in five years

524,032 kids, teens, and adults participated in summer library programming last summer, up 55% since 2010

In just eleven months, there has been an 87% increase in eBook and audiobook circulation through the new collaborative program called LEA (Library EBooks and Audiobooks)

14,000,000 items requested by residents through Inter-Library Loan are delivered through statewide delivery run by the Massachusetts Library System each year.

*Data as reported by public libraries to the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners; years 2018 as compared to 2013

Massachusetts Public Library Construction Program | By the Numbers

Construction grants awarded:


New buildings:


Addition/renovation (includes single purpose)


Total construction dollars awarded:


Planning & Design grants awarded:


Libraries on the current waiting list for construction:


Number of municipalities that have received construction funds


Earliest grant:


Most recent:



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For More Information

Mary Rose Quinn, Head of State Programs
617-725-1860 x220
857-488-7155 (Mobile)