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Postal Service Eyeing Temporary Relocation of Old Chelsea Station

By Maya Rajamani | March 9, 2017 2:36pm | Updated on March 10, 2017 5:48pm
 The Old Chelsea Station on West 18th Street, between Seventh and Eighth avenues.
The Old Chelsea Station on West 18th Street, between Seventh and Eighth avenues.
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DNAinfo/Maya Rajamani

CHELSEA — A historic neighborhood post office’s retail services could be temporarily relocated while construction takes place at the current facility.

The United States Postal Service is considering moving services at the Old Chelsea Station on West 18th Street, between Seventh and Eighth avenues, to another location “during a period of anticipated construction at that site,” spokesman Xavier Hernandez said Wednesday.

“However, no final decision has been made at this time,” he wrote in an email.

In an email to a Chelsea block association president dated Feb. 28, a realty asset manager for the USPS said the Postal Service is currently eyeing a vacant storefront on West 19th Street for a possible relocation. However, the manager noted the entire project is a “proposed undertaking” without providing a specific address or cross streets.

Hernandez declined to provide any additional information about the plans.

The possibility of development at the site dates back to 2015, when the USPS announced it was planning to sell the rights to build an eight-story condominium on top of the post office in an effort to bring in revenue.

At the time, a representative for USPS told community members the post office would remain in operation, but would likely lose some of its space to the condo development.

The Postal Service had originally planned to sell the 1937 building — which is on the National Register of Historic Places — but backtracked amid community outrage.

The USPS issued a Request for Proposals for the sale and development of the building’s air rights in the spring of 2015, giving prospective developers the option of temporarily moving its retail services during construction, Hernandez confirmed Thursday.

USPS representatives will attend Community Board 4’s full board meeting at Mount Sinai West on April 5 to share more information about the project, he added.

“We will continue to put together information, and will release more information publicly on April 5, in keeping with our public notification process,” Hernandez said.