The UPS Store at 4 South Orange Ave. has passed muster with building inspectors, and the owner is looking to open next week.
"For three years, I've been looking to get a UPS store going," said owner George Berkeley, a Maplewood resident who owns the The Beaded Path on Springfield Avenue and a construction company. He also threw his hat in the ring last month to fill a spot on the Maplewood Township Committee but lost out to former mayor Jerry Ryan.
Berkeley took over the address—formerly the location of Hot Bagels Abroad, which moved next door—in August and completed a total gut of the space and furnished it according to UPS specifications. The company's rules for how franchisees should lay out their stores are strict and dictate even the location of a pen rack, he said.
Though Rocketship & Print is just up the street, Berkeley thinks the area can sustain two shipping businesses. Rocketship doesn't offer UPS shipping, and Berkeley's store won't offer FedEx, for one thing.