ALPHARETTA, Ga. — Local residents have been scratching their heads in recent weeks over the U.S. Postal Service’s decision to seal off several outdoor collection mailboxes, including both at the post office drive-thru on Old Milton Parkway.
The action has forced those wishing to mail letters at the post office to park and deposit their cards and letters inside.
“It is ridiculous because you have to go inside,” said Alpharetta resident Rita Brown. “That’s not why people go there to drop their mail off. They drop their mail off because they’re in a hurry. Nobody wants to park and go in.”
Brown said she began using the Old Milton Parkway drive-thru about six months ago when the outside drop box near her residence at Avalon was taped shut. But then, in recent weeks, the drive-thru boxes at the Old Milton Parkway facility were sealed. That has left the parking lot pretty busy at times. With close to 50 stalls available, some drivers have had to bide their time while a space opens up.
“I don’t even check the one at Avalon anymore because I got so disgusted,” Brown said.
But just to be thorough, Brown decided to check it out on Monday. The slot was unsealed and ready for action.
The U.S. Postal Service processes more than 3 billion pieces of First-Class mail during the final week leading up to Christmas. The rush in business usually begins building after the first week of December.
Calls to the Alpharetta Post Office seeking an explanation for why the collection boxes were sealed were not returned. However, within the past week, one of the drive-thru letter boxes has been opened up for service. It has posted times of collection as 5 p.m. weekdays and 2 p.m. Saturday.
When asked for an explanation of the Alpharetta letter box situation, the Atlanta Regional Office for the USPS issued a statement.
“The collection box was closed to make maintenance and security improvements,” the statement read. “The modified collection box is now in service.”