Asian Branch

Image of Asian Branch Library

Branch Address

388 9th Street
Oakland, CA  94607
(510) 238-3400

Branch Hours

12:30pm - 8:00pm
10:00am - 5:30pm
10:00am - 5:30pm
12:00pm - 5:30pm
10:00am - 5:30pm

About the Asian Branch

Click here to learn more about the history of Asian Branch.

The Asian Branch Library is unique among public library branches in the United States as it houses eight Asian language collections. The larger language collections are Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Vietnamese. The smaller collections are Khmer, Lao, Tagalog, and Thai. Additionally, the branch has an Asian Interest collection in English focusing specifically on Asia, Asian heritage, culture, and history, an Asian American Experience collection, and Asian immigrant history.

The branch is equipped with 9 computers with internet access, 5 computers with multilingual interface, and 5 iPads for instructional purposes. Computer and new technology classes are offered in Cantonese and Mandarin.

Currently on Exhibit

Asian Branch at 40: An Oral History

Image of exhibit

In 2014/2015, the Oakland Chinatown Oral History Project documented the living history of the Asian Branch Library through interivews of long-time branch advocates, librarians, and patrons spanning five decades.  The Asian Branch Library in Oakland Chinatown is one of the busiest branch in the city's library system.  It is unique in library branches throughout the United States as it houses collections in 8 different Asian languages including Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Khmer, Lao, Tagalog, and Thai.  This collection speaks to the diverse Asian immigrant population growing in Oakland during the last several decades.  The creation of the branch resulted from tremendous community advocacy starting as a bookmobile in the 1970s and later housed in several temporary neighborhoood locations until it made its home in the Pacific Renaissance Plaza in 1996.

More than a library, the Asian Branch can be thought of as the "living room" of Chinatown, a local gathering space where hundreds of seniors, youth, and families congregate each day to read their ethnic newspaper, participate in storytime and culturally relevant library programs, do homework together, learn about job opportunities/traning, use the computer/internet, and build community.  Through these captured stories, we hope to present not only the library's traditional function, but as a space of vital cultural and social exchange that is critical to a diverse immigrant community.

The exhibit is located at both the Oakland Asian Cultural Center and the Asian Branch Library through June 2015,  For more information, please contact Project Directors Roy or Lora Chan at

Please visit our exhibit website at :


On Display From

Sat, 03/21/2015 - Tue, 06/30/2015

Upcoming Events

Wednesday, May 6th, 2015
Event Name Time
Toddler Storytime 10:30am
OPL Celebrates Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month with Megumi 10:30am
Popsicle Stick Frames for Mom! 2:00pm
Teen Game Day! 3:45pm
Friday, May 8th, 2015
Event Name Time
Asian Branch Teen Advisory Board 4:00pm
Saturday, May 9th, 2015
Event Name Time
Free Computer Help Available 10:30am
Family Storytime 11:00am
Wednesday, May 13th, 2015
Event Name Time
Toddler Storytime 10:30am
Japanese Children's Day Carp Flag Craft 2:00pm
Teen Game Day! 3:45pm