Volume 91, Issue 23

Wednesday, October 8, 1997

glass houses


Post office sent to new address as UCC renovations continue

By Sara Marett
Gazette Staff

The University Community Centre's post office was sent to a new home this week and it arrived at Inprint's basement location as a result of a new Canada Post policy on franchised outlets.

The post office is owned and operated by the University Students' Council and was moved because of a condition in a signed agreement between Canada Post and the USC.

The cost to prepare the site downstairs was approximately $12,000 and $3,000 for moving and setting up the new location, said Jim Walden, general manager for the USC. He added they will also be leasing equipment from Canada Post for the new location at $100 a month for approximately one year.

Geoff Robins

Walden explained the USC's contract with Canada Post expired in July 1997, the same time the policy was announced that all post office outlets had to be located within a secondary line of business.

Tom Dalby, manager of communications of central Ontario for Canada Post, said the relocating of post offices into already existing retail outlets was only a preference on their part, not a requirement.

"We are reviewing individual franchises as their contracts come up and at this point encourage them to move their outlet into an existing business," he said.

Dalby explained the decision was made because of post offices' physical appearance being weaker when standing on their own. It had already been decided by the USC to have the location of the post office moved and when the contract was being negotiated, Canada Post expressed their preference to have a host business for the outlet and the USC agreed to move it into Inprint.

However, Walden said Canada Post was adamant about the post office moving into an existing business and would not sign a lease if it remained as a stand-alone outlet.

The USC then had two choices for a new location – the convenience store or Imprint. Walden said they chose Inprint because the convenience store has less floor space due to Varsity Athletics' occupancy within the store.

"This is why the entire retail configuration of [downstairs in the UCC] has been held over – we wanted to move the post office to its own spot downstairs," he said.

The Infosource kiosk will be moving into the old post office spot and the existing Infosource location will be used as a kiosk for transient retailers.

Walden said the post office was not moved into Infosource because for Canada Post, it was a matter of how the outlet looks and an actual store was preferable to a kiosk counter.

It is also a precondition of the contract between the USC and Canada Post to maintain one other stamp-selling outlet and the convenience store downstairs also sells stamps, Walden said.

As far as future renovations to the UCC, Walden said there are immediate plans to implement a VIA Rail outlet, a formal wear rental and clothing store, a dry cleaner, a photo studio which is already open and an additional pool hall. He added it is still an aim of the USC to have a full service banking institution within the UCC, but was not possible to implement at this time.

To Contact The News Department: gaznews@julian.uwo.ca

Copyright The Gazette 1997