Thursday, February 22, 2007
Buckingham Station Post Office may get an interior facelift in the lobby after its distribution facilities move to a renovated main post office building on Wilson Boulevard within the next month. The facelift would include two more clerk windows to shorten lines, and possibly an “Automated Postage Center,” said Station Manager Jacquelyn Greco.
She said people had already been in to photograph the building, potentially to prepare for improvements.
In the next month, the trucks, drivers and the people who process all the mail that runs through Buckingham will move to Wilson Boulevard and the post office that’s being renovated there.
The Buckingham Station will be left with only about six employees; pick-up times for the mailboxes will run the same as they are now, she said, but they may send carriers out earlier in the day to make up some scheduling differences.
Renovations to the station would include an additional two windows, and, hopefully, an “Automated Postal Center,” a sort of ATM for letters and packages. Patrons can weigh, insure, stamp and mail their domestic correspondence without waiting in line for a clerk, or even when the clerk windows aren’t open.
[It was my love of these doohickeys that got me calling Ms. Greco to begin with. I use one near my office in Rockville often. —Steve.]
“We want one here,” Ms. Greco said. The problem is that the stations that can receive them (this decision is made far up the line) need to have a certain amount of domestic postage sales. [My requests up the line for the exact numbers here have gone unanswered thus far. –Steve.]
Buckingham’s problem is that despite long lines at times in the lobby, the sales are mostly for international postage and money orders; both require a that the patron work with a postal clerk, and neither help to make a case for the APC.
Ms. Greco said she is still lobbying for one, and she said one of the problems is that the machines are still so new that the United States Postal Service might be limiting the installation to places they know do a lot of domestic sales, not necessarily the post offices with the longest lines.
Power Outage Not Caused by Underground Construction
(Edited and re-posted at 2:30 p.m.: Ms. Anderson of Dominion Virginia Power updated information she originally offered.)
Reconstruction is progressing as planned at the corner of Glebe Road and Pershing Drive, and work on that project did not cause a power outage Sunday evening.
According to a report from William “Bill” Roberts, to County Board Member, Jay Fissette on Feb. 9, the undergrounding phase of the project—where the cables running between telephone poles above will be moved under the street—is almost complete.
Mr. Roberts, a capital projects manager with the county, wrote that most of the businesses in the corner have been hooked up to the newly subterranean lines. As well, VDOT issued the permit for construction of the streetscape improvements for the corner on Jan. 30. Residents should begin to see some changes soon.
“The only thing we need now is the easements for the sidewalk” from Marvin Jower of Jenco Corp., an owner of the property at the corner, Mr. Roberts said in a subsequent interview. “Hopefully it won’t be a big deal.”
All of the manipulation of the cables below ground most likely did not cause a power outage Sunday evening, Feb. 18, when two circuits affecting almost 2300 people were damaged, Mr. Roberts and Le-Ha Anderson of Dominion Virginia Power said.
Because of a cable failure near Columbia Pike, 2298 customers found themselves without electricity. Two circuits failed, causing the outage; another two circuits were also affected, but electricity on those lines was diverted automatically, so the 1,500 customers affected there only saw their lights dim temporarily. A total of five circuits were affected Ms. Anderson said.
“We don’t know what caused the failure,” Ms. Anderson said.
She said that problems at “termination,” where cables connect, are common. Many problems can slowly deteriorate a cable, she said.
Customers as far south as Columbia Pike were affected, and all were back on-line within three hours.
Reminder: SPRC Meeting Tonight
Just a quick reminder, the last SPRC meeting is set for tonight, Conference Room on the lobby level of Courthouse Plaza, 2100 Clarendon Blvd. If you want to see what Paradigm will put before the County Board, come and see.
Sorry for the late post.
Normally I post on Wednesdays, but last week I fought one head cold, and this week I caught the stomach flu that both my kids had. With luck, I’ll be back in real business soon. Sorry for the delays.
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