How Do I?
The West Des Moines Public Library is located at 4000 Mills Civic Pkwy in West Des Moines, south of E.P. True Parkway and west of the WDM Police Station. Here we are on Google Maps. We have plenty of parking.
Public transportation access is available through Des Moines Area Regional Transit Authority (DART).
West Des Moines residents who fill out a Library Card Application – you may do this online via our Library Card Pre-Registration Form – and present a valid ID with proof of Identification and Current Residence may have a library card free of charge. If you are unable to come into the building – including if we are closed for public health – please email us for other options to complete your application!
Any resident of West Des Moines, Rural Polk County, contracted cities, or any community participating in Iowa’s Open Access program may obtain a library card free of charge with satisfactory proof of Identification and Current Residence (see below).
For more information, see our Get a Library Card page.
Library cards come up for renewal every third year. Cards can be renewed in person or by calling 515-222-3400 or emailing us. Please include your name, address and/or library card number.
If your card was misplaced or stolen, report it immediately to the library. A $1 fee will be charged to replace lost cards that have not expired. There is no fee to replace a stolen card. Identification is required to replace a lost or stolen card. This can be done via email, if the Library is closed.
Your PIN is a numerical personal identification number, which acts as a security code for using your library card and is necessary to log into some of our services and use our self-checkout machines.
If you need to change your PIN, call us at 515-222-3400, email us, or ask a staff member in the Library. In addition, you may change your existing PIN in My Account.
Most items can be renewed twice (two additional periods) unless a hold has been placed.
The following items cannot be renewed:
- Holiday Books
- Reserve Items (an item someone else has put on hold)
Items can be renewed:
- at our Self-check stations in the building, when we are open
- via phone – call Circulation at 515-222-3404 OR try our Automated Renewals phone at 515-225-1576
- online via our catalog – Login with your card number and PIN. You will find your current Checkouts in My Account. Click to renew.
If an item cannot be renewed because of an existing hold, our systems will tell you. That item can be returned in our outside book drop at any time.
If an item you want is currently checked out, you can claim a spot in line to check out the item by placing a hold. You can place a hold on an item in person, via phone to library staff, or online after logging into your account and clicking Request Item next to the item in the catalog.
Once your turn arrives, library staff will locate the item and have it waiting for you on the Holds shelf. You will be notified when it is ready for pickup – check your online account for your notification preference under My Account > Edit Account. Check the library website to see if in-person or curbside holds pickup is available.
Digital Materials: If the item placed on hold was an eBook or eAudiobook, you will receive a message from OverDrive that it is ready for you. Holds can be placed via the OverDrive or Libby apps or online via Bridges/Overdrive. Once notified, you can check those out yourself wherever you placed the hold.
For your convenience, a 24-hour walk-up book return is located near the library’s front entrance. When the Library is open, there are also return slots in our front hall.
You may also return your items to our 24-Hour Kiosk in Valley Junction located behind the Valley Junction Activity Center.
Fill out our Request Form if you would like to recommend an item for us to purchase to add to our collection. If your suggestion is chosen, your name will be placed on hold for the item. You can request e-content as well as physical materials through this form.
If we don’t own an item, you can request to borrow it from another library, if it’s available. You can make these requests yourself via the MOBIUS link on our catalog. Otherwise you can fill out one of the two (2) forms below.
Request materials – use this form and check “Yes” next to “do you want us to borrow it from another library?”
We do not have an annual sale, but instead we have an ongoing sale of materials. Proceeds go to the WDM Library Friends Foundation and help the Library buy new materials.
The sale shelves are on the 1st floor, currently in the atrium toward the back. Any staff member can direct you. We generally have books, paperbacks and magazines. Materials are put out as they are ready, so it pays to check back often.
For more information, see our Book Sale page.
We have three (3) people on staff here at the Library who are certified notaries. Please call the Reference Desk at (515) 222-3403 ahead of your visit to see if those individuals would be available at your requested time to notarize your document. Generally, they are available during business hours Monday-Friday.
Other locations where you might find a notary: local copy shops and mail centers or City Hall.
If you would like our advice on your next great read (or listen or view), please visit our Reading Recommendations page, where you can explore on your own or fill out a form to ask for suggestions. You can also ask a librarian during your next visit.
Just inside the front doors there is a room with vending machines that we refer to as the Library Living Room. It has tables, chairs and comfortable seating. You may eat pre-packaged and wrapped snacks and hot food in this room.
In the Teen Center, around the corner from the Library Living Room, patrons are allowed to have pre-packaged and wrapped snacks. NO hot food, please!
On the second floor, our quiet study rooms and meeting rooms can have pre-packaged and wrapped snacks consumed in them. NO hot food, please!
If you are attending a meeting in either the Community Room or the Millie Knee Classroom, groups in those rooms can bring in outside food.
Covered beverages are allowed throughout the building. Food is not permitted unless you are consuming it in one of the listed areas above.
We have bike racks by the front door of the library. If you've forgotten your bike lock, you can check one out from the Accounts desk just inside! You don't need a library card, just an ID.
We always recommend you lock up your bike while you're in the library!
WDM Library cardholders who are at least 18 years old and are residents of West Des Moines or Cumming can reserve a FREE Iowa Adventure Pass.
With the Adventure Pass, you can bring your family to the Blank Park Zoo, Science Center of Iowa, Reiman Gardens (Ames), Des Moines Children's Museum and Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden for free. Brenton Skating Plaza is also an option during its short winter season.
More information and self-booking is available on our Adventure Pass page.
All of our library programs are listed on our Library Calendar. You can limit to an age group or to a type of program. For programs that require registration, you can do so via the calendar listing.
Even during Covid limitations, we are offering online programming, so be sure to take a look!
Rooms can be booked online up to a day ahead - contact the Adult Services Desk at 515-222-3403 for same-day options.
The Public Use of Quiet Study and Meeting Rooms Policy applies to use of all rooms on the second floor. You must be 18 years of age or older to book a room on second floor.
The Public Use of Community Room applies to the Community Room.
The Public Use of Teen Study Rooms policy applies to the rooms in the Teen Center. These are booked only through Youth Services staff. Call 515-222-3405.
We are not cleaning the rooms between uses, so please evaluate whether these would be a good fit for your needs.
If you prefer a more open study space, we have many tables in the building with power nearby. There is Wi-Fi throughout the building (SSID: Library Public) that also extends to areas of the parking lot.
If you would like to make a monetary donation to support the West Des Moines Public Library, reach out to the West Des Moines Library Friends Foundation. The Foundation is a 501(c)(3) that supports and enriches the library’s programs and services. Every gift is important, no matter the size.
If you'd like to give directly to the library, you may want to consider our Book Buy Book Donation Program.
For donations of your gently used books, DVDs, etc., see our page on Material Donations.
Thank you for thinking of the Library!