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VENICE, CA-The United States Postal Service is disposing of a parcel of nearly two acres a block and a half from the Pacific Ocean in what represents a rare offering of an infill site that is both close to the beach and near existing commercial development, according to the broker who has the disposition assignment. Grubb and Ellis vice president Martin McDermott tells GlobeSt.com that parcels of this size with development potential rarely come to market in the area, and those that do are usually farther east.

The property that McDermott is marketing for the USPS is a 1.78-acre site at 313 Grand Blvd. that serves as a carrier annex for the postal service. The site, which was originally developed as a Safeway grocery store in the 1950s before becoming a postal facility in the 1970s, includes a 15,800-square-foot building and a 135-space lot with a loading dock.

“It’s unprecedented to have this much commercial land in one contiguous plot, owned by one owner, available for sale this close to the ocean and this close to an existing commercial corridor (The Abbot Kinney Boulevard commercial district)” says McDermott. The Grubb & Ellis broker currently is reviewing submissions from prospective buyers who answered a request for proposals for the site, for which the deadline was Sept. 30. McDermott estimates that the USPS will select a buyer within about two months from that Sept. 30 deadline.

The USPS did not list an asking price in its offering for the property, which has drawn interest from potential buyers throughout the US, including New York, Chicago, Dallas, San Francisco and Southern California, according to McDermott. He notes that those who responded to the RFP include owner-users, investors and developers.

What will ultimately go on the 313 Grand Blvd. site will be determined by a discussion involving the ultimate buyer, community representatives, city officials and others, McDermott says. Retail, hotel, office and residential development would all be possibilities, depending on what the buyer and the community ultimately decide, he adds.

The disposition of the carrier annex is part of a program in which the USPS is reevaluating and consolidating mail processing and delivery operations nationwide. The 313 Grand Blvd. facility has been deemed a site whose function could be relocated to a lower-cost area. The facility houses mail carrier operations only and is not a retail location serving the public.

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