Among the nearly 3,700 branches the United States Postal Service is considering closing nationwide in a bid to regain its financial footing are five in Queens.
The post offices that could be shuttered are located in Astoria, Hollis, Rosedale, Rockaway Beach and Arverne.
The USPS has been facing increasing pressure from competitors such as FedEx and UPS for years, along with new challenges arising in the age of the Internet, leaving it more vulnerable than ever to alternative ways to transfer information and goods over vast distances.
“It’s no secret that the Postal Service is looking to change the way we do things,” Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said Tuesday in announcing the quasi-governmental institution’s plans. “We do feel that we are still relevant to the American economy, but we have to make some tough choices.”
Those choices, however, will not sit well with many Queens residents who would be affected by the closures.
In Astoria, Democratic Party District Leader Costa Constantinides immediately called for residents to rally against the possible closure of the Grand Station Post Office on 30th Avenue.
“I am disturbed by the news that the Postal Service is threatening to close one of Astoria’s main post offices,” Constantinides said in an email to the media. “The Grand Station Post Office on 30th Avenue is important to our community and its closure would create significant problems for Astoria residents — especially our seniors, families and the disabled. This decision would impact all of us through longer lines and worse service at the other locations. Astoria shouldn’t have to suffer because of bad decisions made in Washington.”
The rally is planned for noon Saturday in front of the post office, which is located at 45-08 30 Ave.