Six months after the New Canaan post office left its Pine Street location for a temporary building on Main Street, a U.S. Postal Service spokesman has announced the post office is "a lot closer" to finding a new permanent location in town.

"We're hoping to make an announcement within the next month," USPS spokesman Christine Dugas said.

The post office, which had been at 2 Pine St. for more than 50 years, shut down operations there Jan. 18 after it failed to renew a lease for the space, which is now occupied by Mrs. Green's Natural Market.

While it seeks a permanent site in town, the post office has been operating at 90 Main St.

First Selectman Robert Mallozzi said he continues to have "frequent and ongoing conversations" with USPS and its real estate representatives and that final negotiations for a permanent location are underway.

Dugas said USPS officials have "looked at several sites," but many of those "were ruled out" for not fitting the requirements for a postal service location. Some of the factors that have to be considered include loading and parking capacities, insurance needs and water availability.

-- Nelson Oliveira