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Dave's Park!

Dave's Park!

Canada Post - Middletown

No small town would be complete without a post office. And, as in many small towns, the post office may have started in the old train station but in this new age of progress there is now a healthy distance, at least in terms of business, between the railway and the government run postal service. It's kind of a "six of one; half dozen of the other" situation though.

While Canada Post has made an all-out effort to run its own affairs and operate out of its own buildings it still relies heavily on rail contracts to get the mail out and in. So it makes sense that we find the new post office in a renovated-for-purpose old house right next door to the train station at the corner of Main Street and Water Street.

As with all structures I began by tracing the building lot on wax paper and then transferring that to a piece of paper that would serve as the lot plan template.

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For the building itself I chose a Vollmer Country House. While the picture on the box and certainly some of the design features suggest "European", in fact it is not so different from many of the houses in the small town in which I grew up and in many small towns in this part of the world. It was almost perfect right from the start except for the need to add a front door. I simply put the main house together after extending a window opening to take the door. I did not glue to the base because I would not be keeping it. At this point I used it to help keep the walls square during assembly.

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I assembled the porch and attached it to the house. At this point I had no further need for the base. I decided to use the supplied back door which was more appropriate than the fancier front door, and painted it red. I glued both doors into place and painted the window trims to match the doors.

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I felt that the red roof tiles made the house look too European. Roof tiles are not uncommon around here and certainly we have roofing shingles made to look the same way but black is a more appropraie color. Having painted the roofs I installed those and installed the window trims. Next I added the signage. At this point it was ready for a good coat of matte finish.

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With the building now essentially complete, I turned my efforts to sidewalk work. I thought the large expanse of concrete out front, while very fitting for the train station, did not seem appropriate for this building. I also wanted to round off the corners a bit more to help with trucks turning the corner.

I cut the sidewalk where needed and used a sharp blade to cut and pry it off the foam board and street material. Using the lot plan template I marked the dimensions for the new piece of sidewalk as well as the walk for the front door of the post office. I transferred those markings to a piece of sidewalk material (picture matte).
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The new sidewalk was cut to shape. The lot plan template was extended appropriately, marked and cut to fit the new sidewalk. I drew the outline of the building at this point to help visualize the end result.

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Using the lot plan template I cut a piece of grass mat and fitted it to the surrounding features. I scraped the truf and added ballast for the driveway and the walk to the back door. I added steps where needed and weathered them. This completed the lot preparation and I was ready to complete the building.

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As with the library I decided to not use window glazing. Two feet from the project you can not tell if it is there or not anyway. Well, actually, you can tell. That is the problem. When window glazing is installed you can usually see the telltale glue smudges which, no matter how hard I try, always show up. I made a liner to slip inside the building and added window blinds to the first floor and drapes to the apartment window above. Typically in these small town post offices the post master or post mistress would live upstairs.

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The final four photos show the post office in place; the last photo showing an overview of that corner of Middletown. I believe the post office is a very nice fit for that spot.

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