Monday, November 20, 2006

No Stamp of Approval Yet

Reporter Kris Sherman reports in The News Tribune today that the U.S. Postal Service is moving ahead on plans to sell its historic downtown building--advertisements for relocation facilities should be published by the end of the month. The Postal Service hopes to find a new 6,475-square-foot home downtown and would move most processing into a 10,000-square-foot facility in Fife, also establishing a full-fledged post office there for the first time in the suburban city’s 49-year history.

The Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber weighed in on this issue last October at its quarterly City Center Luncheon, where USPS spokesman Ernie Swanson previewed the multi-year process for the sale. The Chamber also submitted a letter asking for a commitment to maintaining a storefront post office downtown--a condition that seems to have been honored thus far by USPS. That letter also expressed concerns that USPS consider the mail processing needs--both at the corporate and merchant levels--of businesses in the city center.

Developers have expressed great interest in the post office building and, especially, its ancillary parking lot, the lynchpin in the Haub family's long-standing plans for a new downtown office tower.

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