Ward 15 councillor Josh Colle would like to see an additional Canada Post outlet along Oakwood Avenue because he believes the community is underserved.
Several Oakwood Village residents have told Colle the nearest Canada Post locations, at St. Clair Avenue and Bathurst Street and at Eglinton Avenue and Chaplin Crescent, are simply too far for them.
“In my mind there’s a real kind of hole in the donut in terms of postal services, where you have some down St. Clair and some down on Eglinton, but for all the businesses and residents in the middle, there really isn’t anything,” he said.
He said that considering Oakwood Village is home to many residents with mobility challenges, says Colle, which is why the neighbourhood justifies a closer location.
“(With) the mix of small businesses, seniors, and a lot of people who still rely on more traditional postal services, we need some kind of frontline postal services,” he said.
Colle has contacted Canada Post and was told that the service level is currently unacceptable, considering the nearest locations are about 2.5 and 3 kilometres away.
“Three kilometres away in my mind is not acceptable based on how plentiful they seem to be in other parts of the city,” Colle said.
He also believes an additional Canada Post outlet at a smaller retail business could help bring additional street traffic.
“It could animate the strip and bring some activity, that’s always needed and would help merchants,” he said.
Oakwood Avenue merchant Tom Tran, who owns Convenience and Coffee Express at 154 Oakwood Ave., said a Canada Post outlet would be a welcome addition to his store. He said he is looking into applying for one.
“It would help my store a lot to have one,” he said. “More people would come, a lot of people come and buy a stamp here and then complain that there’s no Canada Post around.”
St. Paul’s MP Carolyn Bennett agreed that more Canada Post outlets in smaller retailers could help rejuvenate Oakwood Avenue.
“A Canada Post outlet is part of traffic and part of revitalization,” she said. “I think (business owners) feel that it would have a therapeutic effect on that strip.”
Colle has written to Canada Post asking if they can restore postal service at a distribution building located on Oakwood Avenue, and if not, to consider a retail outlet that could accommodate one.
The current building on Oakwood Avenue previously had postal services, but those were eliminated several years ago. While a small portion of the building is currently used for distribution, the property is listed as for sale.
A sign posted on the building’s door says that Station L will no longer be receiving or accepting any unaddressed ad mail. Future deliveries will go to 66 Ray Ave.
“We’re due to even lose what little Canada Post presence we already have,” Colle pointed out.
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