Tuesday, June 25, 2019


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Hereford Post Office Closing
Written by Bradley Schlegel, Staff Writer

            The Hereford post office is closing. Thursday will be the final day for operations at the facility, located at 43 Star Road, according to Karen Mazurkiewicz, a communications specialist for the U.S. Postal Service.

            The federal agency is implementing an emergency suspension at the location because it could not reach a new lease agreement with the property owner, Tamas Logic, Inc., a Massachusetts company, according to Mazurkiewicz. She said the lease ends at the end of the month.

            "We were hoping to be able to extend the agreement," Mazurkiewicz said Tuesday evening. "But it didn't work out. So we're suspending operations until we can find a new location."

            The suspension caught Supervisor John Membrino by surprise. He said he was under the impression the post office had a longer lease.  "I don't blame the post office for this," Membrino said. "I'm sure they are scrambling around, just like everyone else." 

            One Barto resident described the closure as a shocker. Bob Ruch, who lives halfway between post offices in Hereford and Bally on Huffs Church Road, wondered aloud what township residents would do.

            "I stop here all the time," Ruch said Wednesday morning after dropping off a package.

            One Hereford resident, who declined to identify himself, said he was concerned the closure signifies a shift towards more congestion. He worried that Route 100 would evolve from a local route into a business route.

            "I moved here from Virginia four years ago to get away from city life," he said.  

            The facility's post office boxes will be moved to the Palm location, according to the spokesperson. She said all box holders will receive notice of the change.

            Mazurkiewicz said carriers would work out of the Alburtis post office for the time being.

"Customers who get their mail delivered won't see much of a change," she said.

            That PO box arrangement won't satisfy most Hereford residents, according to Membrino. He said the Palm post office didn't have enough available boxes when they were previously forced to utilize the facility on a temporary basis following a Dec. 25, 2017 fire.  "Most of our residents had to go to the counter and show their identification to get their mail," the supervisor said.

            The utilization of an emergency suspension to close a post office is not unusual, according to the spokesperson. She said the procedure is often utilized due to weather, flooding or safety concerns. 

            Meanwhile, the U.S. Postal Service will begin the process of looking for a new facility in the same area. Mazurkiewicz could not quantify that process, which includes multiple steps such as site selection, community meetings and meeting certain space requirements. 

            A fire on Dec. 25, 2017 at the facility, located at the intersection of Route 100 and Seisholtzville Road and attached to the Turkey Hill, closed the post office for 11 months. It reopened Nov. 19, 2018.

            Earlier this month, an architect based in Farmington Hills, Mich. submitted a sketch design plan for the installation of a Burger King in the space currently occupied by the post office.      The plan does not include any proposed additions to the property near the intersection of Route 100 and Seisholtzville Road, according to Norann Warmkessel, Hereford Township secretary. A sketch design presented by Technical Group Inc. to municipal officials calls for the installation of a Burger King in the space currently occupied by the post office.

            An employee at the firm - which boasts on its website that it has designed more than 1,000 restaurants for the fast food chain - identified the applicant as Turkey Hill Minit Market.

            The corporate owners of the convenience store, located at 3664 Seisholtzville Road, concocted the plan to attract the eatery, according to Timothy Smith, the president of Tamas Logic, Inc.

            "Now the plan to put a Burger King there makes more sense," Membrino said. "It seems to me like the property owner might be looking for a larger return."






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