Congressman Gary Ackerman on Monday criticized the United States Postal Service for planning to close the current Bayside Post Office and relocate the facility to a remote and inconvenient location.
Under the proposal, postal officials want to move the Bayside branch, situated just off Bell Boulevard in back of the Long Island Rail Road station, to a postal carrier annex at 41-29 216th Street. The annex, several blocks from Bell Boulevard, is located in a much less convenient location and on the edge of a residential neighborhood.
“If this is what they are considering, and we have received no official communication to indicate as much, then this clearly would be a consolidation of facilities, and requires public notice, consultation and input,” said Ackerman. “That has not happened. We must insist that proper procedure is followed.”
The Postal Service is seeking to relocate the Bayside branch sometime in 2013. No jobs would be lost under the plan. The Postal Service presently leases both properties and claims that the move would save the agency money.
“Closing the Bayside post office would be a huge blow to Northeast Queens,” said the area's councilman, Dan Halloran. “To make maters worse, the government has been less than transparent about this process. I didn’t even hear about the closure until a few days ago.”
Ackerman said the move could also mean a loss in customers, which would only exacerbate the financial hardships the Posta Service has been experiencing.
“Making it more difficult for consumers to purchase its products and utilize its services is certainly not the way to go,” said Ackerman.
Ackerman also expressed concerns about the potential increase in traffic and further lack of parking that those who live in near the proposed new site may be forced to endure.
The USPS did not return a request for comment.