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$40,000 in renovations set for Gulfport's Beach Bazaar post office

Gulfport

Improvements coming to post office

Residents soon will see $40,000 in renovations to the Beach Bazaar post office, including a system that will finally allow them to use debit and credit cards. The bad news is they're losing their post office boxes.

"But with the new system we will be able to also do international mail for the first time," said Angela Lagan, the store's new owner.

The Beach Bazaar, which is the site of the city's original 1952 post office, is among a dwindling number of retail stores nationwide with an official United States Postal Service post office. It has 32 antique, vintage and retail vendors along with the postal service at the back counter.

When Lagan and her husband, Biff, bought the business at 3115 Beach Blvd. in August, it wasn't certain the USPS would renew the contract to operate a post office. After much concern from residents, petitions and letters of support from government officials, the USPS decided in December to let the post office stay.

The post office decided, however, that it didn't make economic sense to keep paying the store to rent the space for boxes. Customers will need to get new boxes at post offices on 22nd Avenue S or 66th Street N. The boxes will stop receiving mail Jan. 30.

The Lagans will incorporate the old brass post office boxes into the new check-out counters as a way to keep a piece of city history. The couple bought the Beach Bazaar after retiring from state government jobs and moving up from the Keys last summer.

Katherine Snow Smith, Times staff writer

$40,000 in renovations set for Gulfport's Beach Bazaar post office 12/29/12 [Last modified: Saturday, December 29, 2012 3:31am]
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