Public libraries are part of community engagement in arts and culture through their collections and their frequent use as venues for presenting performing and visual arts . Additionally, their core function of curating and maintaining collections of books and other media also have an inherent cultural function .

Access to public library services varies across the country . This indicator is new to the Local Arts Index in 2015, reflecting the availability of data from the federal government Institute of Museum and Library Services. It measures the number of public libraries in every county for every 100,000 residents, using the most recent data file, for information gathered in 2012.

Additional Information: Counties with indicator value = 3,099. Average county indicator value = 18.7 Median county indicator value = 10.6.


Fast Facts from the Arts Index

Demand for arts in education by college-bound students is up!

According to data published by The College Board, the share of SAT test-takers with 4 years of arts or music classes in high school has grown over the past decade from 15% to 20%. The number of college arts degrees conferred annually have risen steadily from 75,000 to 129,000 over the past dozen years.