Making an already crowded facility even more crowded
By Mark Reaman
The Amazon Inc. delivery conundrum in Crested Butte is creating new challenges for the downtown post office. The online retail store is no longer using United Parcel Service (UPS) to deliver packages to people’s homes and so is utilizing the U.S. Postal Service to deliver packages.
That might be fine in a town where home delivery is utilized but in Crested Butte and the surrounding area, home delivery is not currently an option. Post office services are handled at two primary locations for the Crested Butte area: in downtown Crested Butte at 217 Elk Ave. and at the annex space located near Clark’s Market and the Majestic Theater.
Amazon personnel do not seem to realize that home delivery is not available in Crested Butte through the U.S. Postal Service, so all packages are simply being dropped at the Elk Avenue post office directly from Amazon. That is crowding an already crowded facility and the Christmas rush has not yet even started.
Crested Butte postmaster Jim Wardzinski said because of this situation, the office is expecting to be extremely full for the holiday period. Also creating problems is the timeliness of picking up packages. Some people pick up packages within a few days, while others wait for a week or more.
In most communities, the post office would deliver packages to people’s physical address but that is not the case in Crested Butte and the surrounding subdivisions.
“In most cases people don’t put their post office box number on packages they order online so many times we get packages without a box number. That adds to the difficulty of getting them to the recipient,” Wardzinski explained. “It doesn’t look like this will be corrected any time soon so it is essential if people order something from Amazon, or from anywhere else that ships the merchandize, that they include a post office box number.”
Wardzinski suggested customers consciously include their post office box number as part of their address when ordering. There are a couple of ways to do that. For example:
The preferred method:
P.O. Box 138
Crested Butte, CO 81224-0138
An alternative method:
P.O. Box 138
744 Sopris Ave.
Crested Butte, CO 81225-0138
And if the shipper won’t take a post office box:
744 Sopris Ave. – #138 or B138
Crested Butte, CO 81224
As for the crowding issue in general, Wardzinski said the current post office facility in the middle of downtown Crested Butte has been too small for the volume it handles for years. The prudent action, according to Wardzinski, would be to find a new location where the post office can grow as the community grows. However, there are not many locations in town that would accommodate the size of building needed to handle the volume it currently sees downtown and at the annex by Clark’s Market.
In the meantime, the workers at the post office will deal with the Amazon situation. But that may mean you will encounter longer lines to pick up a package as we approach the holidays—so plan accordingly.