LAFAYETTE — The downtown post office has been spared from possible closure, the U.S. Postal Service announced Thursday.
The downtown location was one of 51 post offices in Louisiana that the postal service tagged in July to be studied for possible closure as part of a nationwide effort to cut costs.
The postal service announced in a news release Thursday that a feasibility study determined that other post offices in the area do not have the capacity to take on additional routes or post office boxes should the downtown location be closed.
“We cannot move any letter carrier routes or post office boxes to nearby stations without significant structural changes to those postal facilities,” Post Office Operations Manager Jeff Camp said in a news release. “Our financial condition does not allow this kind of expenditure at this time.”
Camp also said the closure of the downtown location would create a hardship for employees and customers.
The postal service had set a community meeting on Sept. 13 to get feedback on the possible closure, but a postal service spokesman said the meeting is no longer needed and has been cancelled.
The inclusion of the downtown post office on the list of possible closures caught some Lafayette officials by surprise, because the downtown location had just moved in December to city-parish government’s new Rosa Parks Transportation Center near Jefferson and Cypress streets.
The post office had been in the Postal Square building, a renovated grocery store that had also served as a home for some divisions of the city’s Traffic and Transportation Department.
The Postal Square building was demolished earlier this year.
The new two-story Rosa Parks building houses Lafayette’s Traffic and Transportation Department, but a portion of the first-floor was built specifically for the post office, which is paying about $119,000 a year to lease the space.
Two other post offices are being studied for possible closure in Acadiana: Avery Island and Chataignier.