UPDATE: July 6, 4:08 p.m.: U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman, D-Bayside, is blasting the United States Postal Service's rumored plan to move Bayside's post office branch from its current locale near the Long Island Rail Road station on Bell Boulevard to a remote annex along 216th Street.
The annex, located at 41-29 216th St., is on the edge of a residential neighborhood, a site that Ackerman contends is much less convenient for Bayside residents.
"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," the congressman said. "Moving the Bayside branch from its prime spot in the middle of the area's busy commercial strip to a remote and inconvenient location makes absolutely no sense. Not only would this plan adversely impact the local residents and businesses who use this facility, but it could likely cause a further erosion in postal business since its customers may not trek to this out-of-the-way location."
Northeast Queens leaders said they were concerned about recent rumors that the was considering closing down Bayside’s post office near the Long Island Rail Road station on Bell Boulevard.
The offices of both U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman, D-Bayside, and Councilman Dan Halloran, R-Whitestone, have been looking into the matter, but have received no information as to whether the rumor holds any weight.
And calls placed to the U.S. Postal Service were not immediately returned.
“The councilman is pretty concerned because it’s possibly the busiest in northeast Queens,” said Steven Stites, a spokesman for Halloran. “It’s a place where you can conveniently go while you’re shopping or near the train station. It would be a strange location to close. If the rumors are true, Dan will do everything he can to stop it.”
Halloran’s office has currently not been able to get any answers from the Postal Service.
“We haven’t gotten a straight answer,” Stites said. “It’s pretty clear that it’s a potential target, but we don’t know how serious this is. The lack of transparency isn’t helping anybody.”
Jerry Iannece, chairman of Community Board 11, said he had also heard that workers at the post office could be moved to the annex by the Lawrence Cemetery.
“This is typical shortsightedness from a government agency,” he said. “They’d be closing down a post office without considering the impact on the area. And they’d be doing it without any input from the community. This is a post office that gets a lot of traffic. It would be foolhardy.”