The needler in the haystack.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Postal service modifies Plainfield plans


Will the Main Post Office become part of Plainfield's 'transit-oriented development'?

Not a Netherwood Postal Station customer was on hand when I arrived at Plainfield's Main Post Office about 5:35 PM for the scheduled public meeting on the station's proposed closing.

Nor were the gun-toting Postal police officers of last month's Muhlenberg station meeting.

I was told simply that regional officials had informed the local managers that the 'feasibility study for the Netherwood postal station' had been withdrawn...for now.

The Muhlenberg and North Plainfield branches will be closed (no date has been set) and the buildings, which are owned by the Postal Service are expected to be put up for sale.

Station 'A' on Clinton Avenue will remain open. This property is rented -- at a very favorable rate, I was told -- and there are no plans to close it at this point.

It is quite clear, however, that the Postal Service is in a tailspin and the continued erosion as customers turn to email and online bill payments are only likely to accelerate.

Perhaps the only hope for the service is to partner with delivery services like FedEx and UPS for so-called 'last mile' delivery of envelopes and small packages, since the Postal Service's network in unmatchable.

Meanwhile, the Postal Service's principal asset is its real estate -- thousands of solidly built, spacious buildings like Plainfield's main Post Office -- located in the hearts of cities and towns across the country.

Can you envision ten stories of condos or apartments erected atop Plainfield's main P.O.? Now, THAT would be transit-oriented development!

Mr. Cretella, are you reading this?

 
-- Dan Damon [follow]

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1 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dan,

I think the postal service will do what they need to do in Plainfield. It has an enormous task in bringing costs in line with declining revenues. Perhaps in the future we will look back on the days of multiple branch postal offices and six day per week delivery as a "golden age." But technology and levels of service change for all. The postal service still offers one of the best bargains in the world. I am always amazed that my Christmas cards can be taken from my home and delivered to my friends for only 44 cents. Compare that to the cost of the card, or the cost to hand deliver it oneself. Can't be beat.