HASSO HERING

A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

What will become of this former bank?

Written January 3rd, 2021 by Hasso Hering

Outside the US Bank downtown on Sunday: Evidently the automatic teller machine still worked.

Banks are mostly closed on weekends anyway, so the permanent shuttering of the downtown Albany branch of US Bank didn’t make it look any different on Sunday afternoon.

The branch was closed effective Saturday, Jan. 2. Because of the Covid epidemic, the doors had been closed to customers except by appointment since early in the year.

The bank had called its downtown location the “Community Branch.” Its other Albany branch, the Santiam Branch at Santiam and Waverly, remains open.

The downtown branch’s demise is one of 35 in Oregon that US Bank announced in October, including 26 in the Portland area and nine downstate. At the time the Minneapolis-based company said it was closing 400 branches nationwide.

When the Albany closure was announced, county tax records said the building’s owner was Hoyt Corporation, a real estate firm in Minneapolis. But there seems to have been a change in ownership since.

Now the owner of the building at 205 Ellsworth St. S.W. is listed as Mittleman Properties, with the tax bills still going to US Bank Properties in Minneapolis. Mittleman Properties is a Portland real estate firm.

The change in ownership took place last month, on Dec. 15. The assessor’s online record shows the “sales price” as zero, so it’s hard to tell whether it was a sale or something else.

The building had been a bank for 63 years. U.S. National Bank of Oregon built it in 1957.

On Sunday, a day after the announced closure of the branch, the ATM in the Ellsworth Street wall still seemed to be operating.

What will become of the building on this prominent corner downtown? I have no idea. When I find somebody who knows and is willing to tell me, I’ll let you know. (hh)

Seen through the closed doors on Ellsworth, the inside of the branch still looked like a bank Sunday.

 

 


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4 responses to “What will become of this former bank?”

  1. Sharon Konopa says:

    Here you go Linn County! County Clerk’s office!

  2. Bill Maddy says:

    Interesting that now two Downtown Albany bank buildings have closed. Both banks changed the historic landscape of Albany by the removal of some great buildings to create building space and parking lots. Ironically, the bank buildings themselves have existed so many years, they are now historically significant. It will be interesting to see what role they will play in Albany’s “future history”.

  3. Don Strickland says:

    Really a shame. Did some banking yesterday (Monday) at the Waverly branch. Waited in line for over an hour in FM parking lot. Signs say single transactions only at drive up window. Can get inside if you have an appointment. I guess if you don’t want to bank electronically you become a waiter. Personally I think I’ll just go to the credit union. At least their lobbies are open.

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