Postal service may close old Ewa Station

Published: Sep. 19, 2013 at 6:14 PM HST|Updated: Sep. 19, 2013 at 8:20 PM HST
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EWA BEACH, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The building isn't on the State historic registry, but the Ewa Station post office on Renton Road is a landmark that opened in 1958.

"People like it. It's like an old-fashioned plantation type atmosphere," customer Vera Kaaikaula said.

However, the old building may be on the way out. The U. S. Postal Service said closing the Ewa Station would save about $500,000 over the next ten years.  Customers said that will rob the community of a valuable service.

"There's a lot of people that come here not only from this community but from the outskirts because they know there's a little post office here," Mary Gushi said.

Postal Service spokesman Duke Gonzales said the agency is exploring ways to increase efficiency and reduce costs, and the Ewa Station is one of thousands under review because of reduced usage, falling revenue and proximity to other post offices.

"Every day this community is growing. It's not going to end. It's going to be hard to get this post office back. So we don't want it to go," customer Robert Midel said.

Kaaikaula started a petition drive to keep the Ewa Station open. She has gotten more than 500 signatures, many from senior citizens worried about having to catch the city bus to get their mail from another post office.

"It's very hard for us. Please, let it stay here," Fumiko Nakamura said.

"It's an inconvenience. If they have packages it's a lot for them. And they're not that strong," Gushi said.

Customers are also confused because the Postal Service recently installed wheelchair access for handicapped customers.  They believe revenue is dropping because the Ewa Station is only open two hours a day.

"How much money can you make in two hours when people are working? If you did that in any post office I'm sure their revenues would be cut too," Kaaikaula said. "The building is part of the heritage of Ewa. If the post office is losing ground,'it's because of poor service," state Rep. Rida Cabanilla said.

The Postal Service said if the Ewa Station does close, customers could have their PO boxes transferred to the Ewa Beach Post Office, about three miles away.

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