Volume 19 • Issue 11 | July 28- - August 3, 2006

Post offices get forwarded to new addresses

By David Spett

The United States Postal Service has made significant changes to its post offices in Lower Manhattan. Two locations have closed, one has opened and two are expected to open soon, a Postal Service spokesperson said.

The most recent change was the July 8 closure of the post office at Pine, Pearl and Wall Sts. The Postal Service’s lease was expiring and the landlord wanted to increase the rent substantially, said Pat McGovern, a U.S.P.S. spokesperson.

One week earlier, on July 1, a new post office opened at Whitehall and Bridge Sts. The location has automated machines that accept credit or debit cards.

“They perform 80 percent of the functions that are available at a retail window,” McGovern said of the machines.

The new location also has retail clerks and is open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday to Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. McGovern said U.S.P.S. is considering operating the automated machines 24 hours a day.

Four other post offices in Manhattan are open 24 hours.

The location replaces the former Bowling Green post office at 25 Broadway, which closed in August 2004 because the Postal Service lost its lease, McGovern said.

Another new post office at One Hanover St. is almost complete and will be open within the next several months, McGovern said. Currently large “For Rent” signs are hanging in the windows of the facility.

The Hanover St. location is “somewhat of a replacement” for the closed post office at Pine, Pearl and Wall Sts., McGovern said.

She said the Postal Service will also open a third new post office in Lower Manhattan in the next several months, but she did not say where.

“We’re happy to be able to open these facilities for the Downtown area,” McGovern said.

Five customers outside the new post office at One Whitehall St. had mixed reactions to the new facility.

Adria Hopkins said the new location was convenient because she works nearby. She was visiting the post office with coworker Tania Cooper, who agreed that the new location is convenient.

But many people don’t know about the new post office, customer Sammy Medina said, adding that the Postal Service is “not good about telling people” about the location changes.

Robert Webb agreed that the Postal Service should better explain the changes and suggested that they post maps in all Downtown post offices to point out the newly closed and opened post offices.


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