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Members of the West 29th Avenue Neighborhood Association, who objected to a recent United States Postal Service plan to change their zip code ("Stripped of a Zip," March 7), credit U.S. Representative Diana DeGette with accomplishing in the nation's capital what they couldn't do here: getting postal officials to withdraw a plan to move about 2,200 north Denver customers from the 80212 zip to the 80214 designation.

"The truth is, she was able to make it happen for us," says Frank Szipsky, a member of the group whose business, Made in Colorado, is in the 80212 code.

The resolution comes months after word that Denver postmaster Lloyd H. Wilkinson was in favor of the plan, which would have shifted mail volume from the Alcott station, at 3700 Tennyson Street, to an under-utilized Edgewater post office. But residents and business owners in the affected area -- between 20th and 32nd avenues and Osceola Street and Sheridan Boulevard -- complained that the shift might cost them money, forcing them to change everything from letterhead to software. Some even believed that insurance rates would go up.

Their concerns went nowhere fast. Although Wilkinson attended a neighborhood meeting on February 19, he indicated that he "was going ahead with it," Szipsky says. Eventually, residents who didn't want to change zips contacted DeGette.

"She met with the community. Then she intervened with a senior post office official in Washington," says DeGette staffer Lisa B. Cohen.

That pressure seems to have worked, as postal management decided to put the plan on hold -- at least for a year. "We felt it was the right thing to do -- to look at other options," says USPS spokesman Al DeSarro.

Not all is quiet on the zip front, however: The Postal Service still plans to move more than 6,000 Lakewood addresses from 80215 to the 80214 designation.

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Ernie Tucker
Contact: Ernie Tucker