Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Advertise in our classifieds section
Your classified listing could be here!
October 4, 2022

USPS post office to close, will be replaced by UT Document Solutions contract postal unit

Naina Srivastava
A USPS customer walks by P.O. boxes as they exit the USPS West Mall post office.

The U.S. Postal Service’s West Mall post office will close Friday, with plans for a postal contract unit in the same location in the spring, according to University spokesperson Meredith Pruitt.

For now, customers can visit Document Solutions in the School of Social Work or a nearby USPS location. Customers with P.O. boxes must complete a change of address before Friday to either forward mail to a campus address or open a new P.O. box at another USPS location.

Document Solutions does not currently offer P.O. boxes, passport and money order services. But, pending approval, the mail service will open in the new location as a postal contract unit. In this new position, Document Solutions would provide all services offered by the post office except passport services. Texas Global, which is located in the Tower, provides passport services. 

Monika Goldschmidt, associate director for development, donor engagement at the College of Natural Sciences, said she uses the USPS office often for her job, which requires planning large donor engagement events.

“As a team, we run over to the post office often because the invitations are not a typical envelope size so we’re always trying to figure out what amount of stamps or the cost of the stamp we need for the invitation is,” Goldschmidt said.

Goldschmidt said she prefers the USPS office to Document Solutions because the stamps look more personalized and make for nicer invitations to receive. However, with the closure of both the West Mall location and the location closest to her home, Goldschmidt said she’ll likely switch to using Document Solutions because it will be more accessible to her. She said she frequently sees students use the USPS office to obtain passport services.

“They always talk about how they don’t have to wait in a line at that location and it’s super easy,” Goldschmidt said. “I know students will still be able to do that at Texas Global, but I think this was like a secret location.”

Rylan Maksoud, a third-year law student, said he first saw signs that the office would permanently close when he visited the location on Dec. 26. Maksoud has owned a P.O. box at the West Mall location since he was a freshman undergraduate because he didn’t want to change his address each time he moved.

“I looked it up and at first I had assumed it was the post office’s decision to cut costs,” Maksoud said.

Believing there was no way the University had ended USPS’s lease, Maksoud said he filed a petition to the Postal Regulatory Commission. A week later, he learned UT had indeed ended the lease and the USPS general counsel said his appeal was not valid. Since then, he said he has looked into opening a P.O. box at another USPS location.

Pruitt said UT wants Document Solutions to continue offering the “full suite of services” previously offered by the USPS West Mall location.

“We’re hoping for continuity of services,” Pruitt said. “That was the idea behind applying to USPS — to say if Document Solutions moves in (the West Mall location), let’s continue the services that have been provided prior.”

More to Discover