Mailboxes

mailboxMailbox Design and Installation Requirements

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Over the last few years, through the newsletter and direct mailings, Evergreen residents have been urged to address the deteriorating condition of many of the mailboxes in our neighborhood and bring them into compliance with our standards. Since that time, over 50% of you have done just that but too many residents have ignored or put off the updating of their mailboxes. We continue to hear comments from residents and some prospective buyers about their concerns regarding the shabby appearance of some of the mailboxes.

The following provides some background and history for how the required mailbox design and colors were developed. It should be noted that the required design of the mailbox structures has NOT changed since the first house was built in Evergreen. Only the colors and installation height and setback have been changed. You will see that the reason for changing the height and setback are to meet City and USPS requirements which almost none of our mailboxes initially met.

When the first articles and letters were sent out, many of you expressed a desire to improve your own mailbox, but said that the paint color requirements at that time were difficult to meet because you couldn’t get a paint to match their neighbor’s house colors. In addition, some of the mailboxes needed significant repair or complete replacement. We were asked if the ECA board could identify people that could repair or replace their mailboxes.

As a result of this input, the ECA board talked to several design and color consultants to make recommendations for how to improve the appearance of the mailboxes. Besides the obvious repairs, painting and straightening needed, both of the consultants said the same thing – “make all of the mailboxes the same color(s) and design. Use colors that will make the mailboxes blend into the property and landscaping. You want buyers to see the beauty and features of the house and property – not a mailbox that stands out and distracts them from seeing what they are there to potentially purchase.”

Based on the recommendations of the consultants, the ECA board made a decision to change the mailbox colors and to standardize them for the whole Evergreen neighborhood.

The new paint colors are:

  • Sherwin Williams Van Dyke Brown, #7041 Duration Satin latex for the wood portion of the mailbox assembly
  • Krylon #5812 gloss black in a spray can for the metal box or, if you prefer to brush or roll it on, use
  • Sherwin Williams, All Surface Enamel Latex Gloss Black #501.

The particular black paint was chosen because it performs well on metal surfaces and matches the black color of a new mailbox. The routed numbers will also be the black color but they need to be primed before using the black paint. The Van Dyke brown paint will work well as a primer for the numbers before painting them with the black. Two coats of paint are highly recommended for all surfaces to assure long lasting performance and avoid the need to repaint frequently! (Note: any brand of paint may be used as long as it matches the colors specified above.)

An account has been set up for Evergreen residents at the Sherwin Williams store located at 2170 Eagle Creek Lane (tel. 651-436-1440). The account is under Evergreen Community Association and provides a significant discount to our residents for the paint. It is important to know that the Duration Van Dyke brown is only available in gallon containers, so it would be wise to share in the purchase with your neighbors as one gallon will paint quite a few mailbox assemblies.

In addition to the color changes, all mailbox assemblies must use:

  • Standard Jumbo black metal mailbox (available at Menards-part # ST200B00 – may be available at Home Depot as well). Most of the mailboxes currently in place meet this requirement and will only need to be painted using the specified black paint if they have been painted other colors.
  • Wood assembly must meet the design and materials that have long been in place. This means that only red cedar should be used. Plywood or treated lumber is not allowed due to more prevalent warping and paint peeling. The main post should be a 4”x6” post, NOT a 4”x4” post. The 4”x6” post will last longer and stand upright much better than a smaller 4”x4” post.
  • House numbers should be routed into the wood on the sides and painted black. Attachable numbers should not be used. If you have attached numbers, they can be removed and numbers routed in without removing the post assembly from the ground.

City of Woodbury Mailbox Requirements

In addition to improving the appearance of the mailboxes, we have learned that the city of Woodbury adopted a policy on mailboxes requiring, among other things, a minimum height above the street and set back from the curb. Mailboxes not meeting these standards will no longer qualify for consideration of replacement or repair costs if the mailboxes are damaged during snowplowing!

These City requirements are:

  • The bottom of the metal box must be 48” above the street level. Evergreen has 4” high curbs so the box should be 44” above the top edge of the curb.
  • The front face of the box must not extend beyond the edge of the curb.
  • Newspaper boxes must be set back 10” from the curb. However, because of the design of our mailboxes with the angled newspaper box, we could not comply with that last requirement. It would result in the mailbox being too far away for the Postman to reach.

After discussions with a city representative as well as the local Post Office, it was agreed that we would set the face of the metal box back 3” from the top edge of the curb and that would be satisfactory. At this time, very few of the mailboxes in Evergreen meet these requirements. This means that nearly all of them will have to be replaced or reset. This will most often require either a new 10 foot long 4” x 6” post or an extension to the existing 8 foot post to make sure it is at or below the frost line. We expect most posts will have to be replaced since after 20 + years, many have a rotted section right at ground level or below. It is CRITICAL that the posts be installed as specified or we will not comply with city and USPS requirements.

Design and Installation Specifications

Detailed spec. of entire post   Close-up of above-ground post and paperbox

Evergreen-Mailbox-7     Evergreen-Mailbox-Detail-8

Click on the image for larger version

Frequently Asked Questions About Mailboxes

Last revised July, 2014