Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Post offices in East Tampa and St. Petersburg's Midtown will remain open

Donald Weik of Tampa picks up his mail Wednesday at the Produce Station post office, 2810 E Hillsborough Ave. Weik is a Postal Service retiree who worked as a mail carrier in Tampa. The Produce Station office had been facing closure.

OCTAVIO JONES | Times

Donald Weik of Tampa picks up his mail Wednesday at the Produce Station post office, 2810 E Hillsborough Ave. Weik is a Postal Service retiree who worked as a mail carrier in Tampa. The Produce Station office had been facing closure.

Two Tampa Bay area post offices, among about 3,700 marked for possible closure nationwide, will remain open.

U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor delivered the news Wednesday at the Morris Milton post office in St. Petersburg. Castor said the post office in the city's Midtown district, as well as the Produce Station post office in East Tampa, are being spared.

A steady stream of customers flowed into the East Tampa post office Wednesday. Cheryl Hicks, 52, grew up going to the post office with her parents. Now, she runs a house cleaning business and does errands for her customers. She stops by the post office, at 2810 E Hillsborough Ave., usually three times a week.

Josephine Brady, 69, who has lived in East Tampa longer than the Produce Station Post Office has stood at its current location, said its closing had been the talk of her neighborhood.

"I didn't understand, out of all the post offices, this was the one that they picked," she said.

Across the bay, Castor said she had learned from a postal clerk that the St. Petersburg facility is regularly used by walk-up customers, people who are handicapped and others who arrive on bicycles.

She said the post office was off the closure list largely because it is "a linchpin" in the neighborhood's development plan.

"It was a no-brainer for this post office to get off the list,'' Mayor Bill Foster said, adding that those who had made the decision to close the facility didn't "fully understand the full import" of their move.

The St. Petersburg post office had been a long sought amenity in its primarily African-American community, which had also lacked a supermarket and bank until recent years.

Opened in 2005, it bears the name of civil rights lawyer Morris W. Milton, who founded the Democratic Black Caucus of Florida and was a president of the St. Petersburg NAACP branch. His widow, Dorothy Milton, is pleased that the facility will remain open.

"This post office has added value to this community,'' she said.

Watson Haynes, a community leader, called it a historic site, noting that Morris Milton's office had been nearby and that he had fought for the rights of postal workers.

The full-service post office at 1750 16th St. S was hard won. Former Mayor Rick Baker had lobbied for the facility, enlisting the help of then Gov. Jeb Bush and other politicians.

"This piece was central to what we were trying to accomplish,'' said former deputy mayor Goliath Davis, who worked under Baker to bring services to the economically disadvantaged area.

Even as the small group celebrated, Foster said work needs to be done to keep the post office from reappearing on the chopping block. The city and community will have to increase retail traffic, he said. For its part, Foster said the city will work with the property's owner to improve access and parking.

Waveney Ann Moore can be reached at wmoore@sptimes.com or (727) 892-2283. Jessica Vander Velde can be reached at (813) 226-3433 or jvandervelde@sptimes.com.

Post offices in East Tampa and St. Petersburg's Midtown will remain open 10/19/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 19, 2011 11:37pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Good news: Tampa Bay no longer a major foreclosure capital of the country

    Real Estate

    Once in the top five nationally for foreclosure filings, the Tampa Bay area no longer ranks even in the top 25.

    A few short years ago, Tampa Bay was a national hub for foreclosures. Not any more. [Getty Images/iStockphoto]
  2. Largo promotes Joseph Pennino to deputy fire chief

    Public Safety

    LARGO — The city has a new deputy fire chief after Dave Mixson left the post to take a job as chief and director of public safety of the South Pasadena Fire Department.

    Largo Deputy Fire Chief Joseph Pennino
  3. State Attorney announces expansion of Hillsborough juvenile civil citation program

    Courts

    TAMPA — Kids who, for the first time, commit certain minor crimes in Hillsborough County may now avoid a criminal conviction by completing a civil citation program.

    Thursday's announcement of civil citations for first-time juvenile offenders in Hillsborough County marked the fulfillment of a campaign promise by State Attorney Andrew Warren.
  4. Pinellas County approves settlement with Suncoast fire district

    Public Safety

    SEMINOLE — County commissioners on Tuesday approved a settlement with the Pinellas Suncoast Fire and Rescue District, closing out a lawsuit filed last year by the district over millions of dollars of emergency medical services funding.

  5. Attorney general has no plans to resign despite Trump rebuke

    Nation

    WASHINGTON — Attorney General Jeff Sessions said he has no immediate plans to resign a day after President Donald Trump excoriated the nation's top prosecutor for recusing himself from the probe of suspected Russian meddling in the 2016 campaign.

    In this July 12 file photo, Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks in Las Vegas. President Donald Trump says he never would have appointed Sessions as attorney general had he known Sessions would recuse himself from overseeing the Russia investigation. Trump makes the extraordinary statement about Sessions in an interview with the New York Times Wednesday. [AP Photo/John Locher, File]