School may house Keene Valley mail service

"I don't know how we would ever calculate that," Ford-Johnston said.

Three options weighed

Jordan's group had been working on three potential solutions to the postal service dilemna.

The first option was to create a CPU at Keene Central School.

The second option was to retrofit a vacant building within the hamlet to be a CPU and include retail space unrelated to mail service. The downside of this plan was that it was very expensive and might have taken a year or two to see to fruition, Jordan said.

The third option was to create a centralized array of key-operated clusterboxes in the town parking lot or another location. It would be covered overhead with a roof of some kind. The downside of this plan was that there would be no window service, so residents would be unable to send packages, Jordan said. It might also be difficult for residents with limited mobility to access the boxes in inclement weather.

Jordan's group held an informational meeting for the community on the issue of mail service on June 2 at KCS. Roughly 27 people attended. The plan of placing the CPU was "far and away the most favored choice," Jordan said. This is because the school option provided an inside space that offered the traditional social interaction found at post offices.

Supervisor pleased with plan

Town Supervisor BillFerebee said he thought the school's plan for the CPU would work and that it was fortunate KCS stepped forward. While his ultimate goal remains to have the USPS themselves return to the hamlet, he was not hopeful this would ever occur.

"We've come to the realization that's not going to happen," Ferebee sad.

Having a centralized location for picking up and sending mail serves as a community hub of sorts.

"It's very important to small towns," Ferebee said.

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