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. Trump asked intelligence chiefs to push back against FBI collusion probe after Comey revealed its existence

    National

    President Donald Trump asked two of the nation's top intelligence officials in March to help him push back against an FBI investigation into possible coordination between his campaign and the Russian government, current and former officials said, according to the Washington Post.

    After President Donald Trump fired James Comey, shown here, as FBI director, the Washington Post is reporting, Trump made separate appeals to the director of national intelligence, Daniel Coats, and to Adm. Michael S. Rogers, the director of the National Security Agency, urging them to publicly deny the existence of any evidence of collusion during the 2016 election.
  2. For Gov. Rick Scott, 'fighting' could mean vetoing entire state budget

    State Roundup

    Every day, Gov. Rick Scott is getting a lot of advice.

    The last time a Florida governor vetoed the education portion of the state budget was in 1983. Gov. Bob Graham blasted fellow Democrats for their “willing acceptance of mediocrity.”
  3. Romano: Time is up chief, make a call on police body cameras

    Crime

    Excuse me chief, but it's time to take a stand.

    St. Petersburg police Chief Tony Holloway
  4. Potential new laws further curb Floridians' right to government in the Sunshine

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — From temporarily shielding the identities of murder witnesses to permanently sealing millions of criminal and arrest records, state lawmakers did more this spring than they have in all but one of the past 22 years to chip away at Floridians' constitutional guarantees to access government records and …

    The Legislature passed 17 new exemptions to the Sunshine Law, according to a tally by the First Amendment Foundation.
  5. Fennelly: This season's Chris Archer is a pleasure to watch

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG

    At this time last season, through 10 starts, Rays pitcher Chris Archer was 3-5 on his way to 9-19.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Chris Archer (22) throwing in the first inning of the game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the New York Yankees at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, May 21, 2017.