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Produced & Maintained by Idaho Mountain Express, Box 1013, Ketchum, ID 83340-1013 
208.726.8065 Voice
208.726.2329 Fax

Copyright © 2001 Express Publishing Inc.
All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited. 


Formula Sports


Idaho Conservation League



Gary Carr...The Carr Man!

Edmark GM Superstore : Nampa, Idaho

For the week of June 20 - June 26, 2001


New post office 
to open July 23

$3 million facility boasts room to grow

"This is probably the nicest facility in the whole Northwest, without a doubt."

John McDonald, Ketchum postmaster

Facts about new Ketchum post office— how it will affect you:

  • Ketchum’s new post office on the corner of Second Avenue and Fourth Street will open July 23, following a two-day move from the existing facility.

  • Box numbers from the existing facility will remain the same, but some boxes will be up-sized, prompting a $32 annual charge rather than $20. Those who are up-sized can downsize again, but will have to change box numbers.

  • Everyone will need to get new box keys. Old keys can be exchanged at the existing post office.

  • Ketchum Postmaster John McDonald asks that all Ketchum post office customers please update their street addresses and phone numbers when the new facility opens.

  • Most packages will be delivered via "parcel lockers" located near the service desk of the new facility. Numbered keys will be put in recipients’ boxes that will open corresponding parcel lockers.

Express Staff Writer

Three years of planning is set to pay off next month when the U.S. Postal Service opens its new Ketchum post office on July 23.

Finishing touches are nearing completion on Ketchum’s new post office. A sizable lobby awaits customers at the new facility, which is scheduled to open on July 23. Express photo by Willy Cook

Though erected on budget, building the facility took three months more than anticipated, Ketchum Postmaster John McDonald said.

"This is probably the nicest facility in the whole Northwest, without a doubt," he said.

The 17,700-square-foot, $3 million facility is "at the upper end of what we spend," agreed David Miller, Postal Service construction project manager.

Postal Service employees plan to make the transition to the new office on the corner of Second Avenue and Fourth Street on Saturday and Sunday, July 21 and 22. Barring unforeseen complications, the changeover should be pretty smooth, McDonald said.

Outgoing mail services will not be interrupted, and regular delivery services will only be interrupted on July 21 and 22.

Post office box numbers will be the same as those at the existing facility, but box holders must trade their old keys at the new facility to receive keys to their new boxes.

"In some cases," McDonald said, existing box numbers have been up-sized one size, which will increase annual rents from $20 to $32, McDonald said. Up-sized box holders, however, will be able to obtain smaller boxes by changing box numbers.

Another notable change in the post office’s operations will be the way packages are distributed. When a parcel arrives, a key will be placed in the recipient’s box. The key will open one of 150 parcel lockers near the new facility’s service counter.

The Ketchum post office now distributes about 300 packages a day, McDonald said, so some yellow cards will still be issued to those picking up packages.

The 8,500 post office boxes at the new facility should handle the northern Wood River Valley’s growth for about 20 years, coming close to meeting the upper valley’s population capacity, McDonald said. The existing facility has 5,800 boxes.

Automatic doors open off Fourth Street into a large lobby decorated in Postal Service blue, red and gray. Upon entering, ample counter space awaits customers to the right. To the left, a corridor of post office boxes lines the periphery of the building. Security cameras line the hallways, which will be open 24 hours a day.

The gut of the facility—where Postal Service employees work—is about three times larger than the interior of the existing post office.

"The working conditions in Ketchum’s existing post office are something less than deplorable," McDonald said. "I’m not sure we conform to anybody’s (safety or working condition) standards."

The building housing the existing post office is privately owned and has been leased to the Postal Service. The lease runs out in mid August, and new tenants have not been lined up for the property, said Realtor Dick Fenton, who is handling the lease.

"My guess is that it will end up being more than one tenant," he said. "It will probably be retail or something of that nature."


The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.