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Palo Alto hopeful about buying historic post office

Original post made on May 10, 2013

The future of Palo Alto's downtown post office building could become clearer Monday night, when the City Council considers whether to purchase the historic and iconic Hamilton Avenue building from the cash-strapped U.S. Postal Service.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, May 10, 2013, 8:52 AM

Comments (11)

Posted by CrescentParkAnon., a resident of Crescent Park
on May 10, 2013 at 10:52 am

What a waste of time, energy and money .... just leave the post office as a post office.
I hate conservatives and this neverending pointless war on anything government.

They will just go buy or rent another building and it will be like the miserable little post offices in other cities and pretty soon in rent they will be paying the same amount out and will not have saved any money at all, and we will all get worse service and the post office will against have to justify its existence.

Posted by Katie, a resident of Old Palo Alto
on May 10, 2013 at 6:20 pm

The beautiful Birge Clark post office is the architectural gem of our town. Over the last several years the city council has been bent on building monstrocities and also allowing developers to tear down some of our charming buildings. Let's hope they finally get something right and buy the building so future generations can see what Palo Alto used to look like.

Posted by Elaine, a resident of Ventura
on May 10, 2013 at 8:54 pm

Very exciting to hear about this possibility. I love the Post Office building, and would be really happy for it to be in good hands and being used well--and part of it, possibly, by the Post Office. I support the City Council's efforts here.

Posted by wrong side of Oregon, a resident of Green Acres
on May 10, 2013 at 9:01 pm

Use the Stanford money. This is a good use of it. (I wish it were as easy to get them to think about aesthetics and quality of life on the other side of town.)

Posted by agree, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 10, 2013 at 9:16 pm

Agree with Katie. The Post Office is historic and needs to be protected. Other historic structures like the Gatehouse on Lytton and the front facade at the old Medallion Gallery on University next to La Strada have been desecrated by the overdevelopment associated with those projects. As is typical in Palo Alto the developers controlled the process so their priorities dictated the outcomes
and preservation of the historic resource was secondary. Developer
control of the process is the common theme in Palo Alto over and
over and over again and is ingrained in City Hall.

Posted by Conditions of approval, a resident of Community Center
on May 10, 2013 at 11:39 pm

Only if the work on it will NOT be done by any local developer or architect. We must see all the work previously done before choosing one. That leaves out anyone even remotely connected with the Mitchell Park library, the JCC, the Cheesecake Factory, 800 High St., Lytton Gateway, 800 Alma and many more.
We need a public Hall of Shame listing these community disgracers.

Posted by interesting, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 12, 2013 at 10:47 am

re:conditions of approval
You are right. We need to end the status quo in Palo Alto. As far
as The Cheesecake Factory, approval of Roxy Rapp's new mega building at Bryant and Univ which has a setback encroachment waiver should have been contingent on a complete facade remodel at the least of
his CAKE to reduce it's impact on the University Ave streetscape.

Posted by mary, a resident of Crescent Park
on May 13, 2013 at 11:04 am

Stanford money should be returned to taxpayers. If not, use it for post office so we don't get socked again. I have a real problem with using the building for government office, however. What a waste of a beautiful building by giving cushy offices to our local government workers. I would think there may be lots of revenue-generating uses we could think of. This building should be accessible to all Palo Alto residents on a daily basis. How about some arts use or volunteer-run restaurant or coffee house? Little theater?

Posted by Jim H., a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on May 13, 2013 at 12:02 pm

Why is the city getting in the retail business? Didn't the city buy the old PAMF building back in 2001. It was supposed to be ready to be used by the Palo Alto Historical Association in the summer of 2011. So far, it's been on the books for 12 years and nothing has happened to it.

In addition, the planning department is using prime downtown space on the corner of Hamilton and Bryant, and now wants to move more planning people to the post office building?

El Camino Park is still not completed. Mitchell Park library is way behind schedule, to name just two projects that need the city's attention. Let's get stuff in order before finding new shiny objects to distract us.

Palo Alto has a bad case of ADD.

Posted by Mary, a resident of Old Palo Alto
on May 13, 2013 at 3:54 pm

Aesthetically, Palo Alto has been ruined. It's commercial buildings remind me of the city of Fremont, more and more. Cheap, hideously designed, oversized stucco buildings.

Posted by agree, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 13, 2013 at 6:03 pm

Re: Mary
I agree about the ugly over-sized stucco buildings. You must be
referring to the huge building on Lytton at Bryant. The worst thing about this is it ruined the Gate House preservation effort and the
small plaza next to it. This is a typical Palo Alto debacle of
major proportions. But the developer needed to get his square footage.

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