- Associated Press - Friday, May 6, 2016

MELLETTE, S.D. (AP) - A new post office is set to open in the northeastern South Dakota community of Mellette, two years after the old facility was deemed unsafe and shuttered.

The U.S. Postal Service suspended operations at the town’s post office in May 2014, saying the building had deteriorated to the point of an emergency.

The Postal Service initially delivered Mellette’s mail to Northville, nearly 5 miles away. That proved to be an inconvenience for Mellette’s 200 residents because their mail couldn’t be left in the 24-hour lobby due to lack of space.

“The trouble was getting there when they were open” during normal business hours, Mayor Brian Bauer told the American News (http://bit.ly/1OgG8iW ).

The government eventually set up mailboxes outside the old post office, and the community decided to build a new post office and rent it to the government. The new facility will have a retail window and 123 boxes.

“We’ve worked with them pretty closely, as to what they needed for space and how they needed it arranged,” Bauer said. “It’s been a slow process, but it’s really taking shape now.”

The new building is scheduled to be inspected Wednesday. An official opening date has not been set, but “our hope is to be able to occupy the building soon afterward,” Postal Service spokesman Pete Nowacki said.

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Information from: Aberdeen American News, http://www.aberdeennews.com

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