Palo Alto's effort to buy the downtown post office from the cash-strapped U.S. Postal Service will advance to the next round after the city was selected to make a second bid for the historic Birge Clark-designed building, officials announced Monday.
The property at 380 Hamilton Ave., believed to be the first post office to be designed expressly for that function, has been a site of heavy speculation ever since the postal service announced its plan to sell it as part of a nationwide cost-cutting effort. City spokeswoman Claudia Keith said about 50 people toured the site before the bidding period, though it's unknown how many actually made offers.
The City Council has held numerous closed sessions in the past few months to discuss the purchase of the 1932 building, which they hope to preserve as a public facility. One idea currently on the table is to turn it into a development center, which would allow the city to stop leasing space for that purpose across the street from City Hall.
The anticipated deadline to submit the second offer is Dec. 2.