Second post office could shut down

BURBANK — The United States Postal Service is studying the possibility of shuttering the Glenoaks Station Post Office at the end of the year and merging its operations with Burbank’s main postal station on Hollywood Way.

The news comes less than one month after U.S. Postal Service officials announced plans to close the Magnolia Park Post Office at the end of the year.

The decision to possibly halve the number of Burbank post offices, from four to two, is part of a cost-cutting measure, U.S. Postal Service spokesman Richard Maher said. No precise closing dates have been set.

“We’re studying the situation, but no decision has been made,” Maher said. “Customers have more retail options than they ever had before. They have a lot of different ways to access us.”

Employees from the Magnolia and Glenoaks locations would be transferred to neighboring stations, the city’s downtown office at 135 E. Olive Ave. and its main station at 2140 N. Hollywood Way. The Hollywood Way post office will be renovated to accommodate additional staff and traffic.

In making the decision to close the Magnolia Park Post Office, 3810 W. Magnolia Way, and possibly the Glenoaks Station Post Office, 1634 N. San Fernando Blvd., officials are taking into account not only the sagging economy but the state of the shipping business in general, Maher said. More customers are turning to the Internet to satisfy their shipping needs.

But the Internet does little to drive foot traffic, increase local business or foster a sense of community, neighbors of Burbank stations said.

“Nothing beats a post office when it comes to bringing people to the area,” said Daniel Ashikian, whose Sevan Gas Station, Daniel’s Automotive and Western Union businesses share a block with the Glenoaks Station Post Office. “But we would have to see what comes in next to see how it will affect business.”

Last month, business owners in the Magnolia Park area were quick to act after hearing of their post office’s impending closure. Atomic Records owner Rick Alper and Cobblestone Gift and Floral Designs owner Cathy Whitaker, whose businesses neighbor the Magnolia Park Post Office, have collected hundreds of signatures from residents upset about the closure.

While a similar effort for the Glenoaks Station Post Office has yet to materialize, residents stopping off at the post office this week said they will do everything in their power to keep the post office in their neighborhood.

“Of course the other offices are not so convenient for me,” said Grisha Nazarian, owner of Grisha’s Custom Shoes. “But, realistically, what are you going to do?”

Although it is on San Fernando Boulevard, the Glenoaks Station Post Office got its name from the street it was originally on, Glenoaks Boulevard, near Scott Road. Today, a commemorative inscription on the building’s left side indicates the year it was moved: “This building dedicated to public service. 1963.”

“The loss of the Glenoaks Station Post Office is the loss of a neighborhood gem,” said Councilman David Gordon.

A 27-year business owner in the Magnolia Park district, Gordon lamented the coming closure of the Magnolia Park Post Office at last week’s council meeting.

“Patrons having to relocate to Hollywood Way or Olive Avenue will both cause and experience more traffic, time delays, and, at times, parking frustration,” Gordon said. “It’s hard to imagine serving the same number of patrons with fewer facilities will do anything but diminish the quality of service. I have already asked city staff if they might explore anything the city might be able to do to try to prevent these closures from going forward.”


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