Cary Customers Seek Solutions For Post Office Crowding
Posted February 21, 2006 1:41 a.m. EST
CARY, N.C. — Pick any day of the week, and any time of day of day. Usually, if you go to the United States Post Office in Cary, you'll wait.
"People are nice, just too many people, too few post offices," said post office customer John Roposh.
Lines out of the lobby are common at the downtown Academy Street branch. Less than two miles down the road, Cary's only other post office is bigger, but the lines are even longer.
"This is typical for the first day of the week, with yesterday being a holiday," said post office customer George Davis.
The wait is hard to ignore, and postal officials are taking notice. One option the post office is considering is something other shipping companies are already doing in Cary -- partnering with existing businesses to set up shop.
A growing trend in growing communities throughout the country is do-it-yourself mailing. There's also the online option - log-on, instead of line up. You can do everything from your computer that you do at the counter, and then your postal carrier picks it up at your home. There's also the added convenience of not having to struggle with big boxes.
"It's kind of a pain," said customer Charles Kidder. "They're bulky, the doors don't open automatically. But you have to do it."
Actually, you don't. But that's part of the post office's struggle -- making people aware of their choices. One of those is the relatively new automated postal center in the lobby of the main Cary Post Office that's available 24 hours a day.
"I came in, the line was at least 35 minutes long, and I saw the machine, and 1,2,3," said Davis. "And it worked really well."
Postal officials hope these options catch on, so they can catch up at the local branches. The U.S. Post Office has already set up shops inside businesses in Raleigh and Chapel Hill.