Portsmouth, NH, may lose downtown post office in redevelopment of historic federal building


Seacoastonline.com: The future of the only downtown post office in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, is uncertain as city officials continue to move forward with the redevelopment of the property.

Representatives from Redgate/Kane, the city’s development partners, said they are planning to demolish part of the current post office wing of the McIntyre Federal Building property and are considering replacing the existing post office with a “kiosk.”

Deputy City Manager Nancy Colbert Puff said city officials “remain hopeful that the post office will stay.”

The city hopes to receive the 2.1-acre federal building property for free from the General Services Administration, which owns the property, via the Historic Monument Program. The development team can’t demolish the 52-year-old federal building under the provisions of the program.

… Councilor Rebecca Perkins-Kwoka said she believes the concern voiced by residents is what will be “the structure of what the Postal Service will be on site going forward.”

“It’s really up to them,” she said of post office officials. “We’ve made it clear we want them to stay. They really are the ones to determine that.”  She too has heard the kiosk option and said “if the choice is between a kiosk and nothing I guess we’d take the kiosk.”  But she believes it’s important for the city to have a post office downtown.

“From an urban planning perspective a post office is one of the things critical to delivering real livability downtown,” she said Tuesday.  Read more.  (There’s more about the McIntyre Project here.)

(Photo: Kimberley Haas, Union Leader)