Post Office to Close After 50 Years
An East Austin post office will be forced out of its longtime home next year to make way for a restaurant.
The post office on East Sixth Street near Chicon opened in October 1963, according to the postal service. And next year, almost 50 years to the day after it opened, it’s scheduled for closure. Ruth Cordova has lived in the neighborhood for more than four decades.
“I wouldn’t feel good because this is so close to me, you know?” she says.
The post office has been leasing the space and the lease expires in September 2013. But the property’s new owner, MP Commercial Partners, says it wants to use the building for a restaurant. The company is led by local investor Steve Malachowski.
“I have already received inquiries from restaurants in Dallas that are interested in locating into Austin, and are interested in that East Side location,” Malachowski says. “The post office building is already getting significant interest and traffic, which we’re pleased by.”
A U.S. Postal Service spokesperson says they’re considering all their options. That could mean finding a place just down the street. But with almost a year and a half until the lease is up, it may be too soon to start shopping for a new location. Lori Cervenak-Renteria with the East Cesar Chavez Neighborhood Association hopes they don’t move it far from where it is now.
“Our neighborhood is going through just incredible changes in all aspects of the community,” Venak-Renteria says. “It would just make it so hard for all the seniors and the elders, and all the native, long-time people in the neighborhood.”
The U.S. Postal Service is already looking to relocate its main, downtown location at West Sixth and Guadalupe streets. That entire block has already been sold to real estate developers. USPS will move its mailboxes and retail services to one location and assign its downtown delivery unit to the post office on South Congress near Ben White.