U.S. Bank interested in Rifle location | PostIndependent.com
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U.S. Bank interested in Rifle location

Pete FowlerGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. U.S. Bank is operating three locations in Glenwood Springs, and though it is interested in opening a Rifle Branch, it has no immediate plans to do so.Rifle has been called a booming town that may soon exceed Glenwood in size. Census Bureau population estimates from 2005 put Glenwood Springs at 8,564 residents with Rifle trailing close behind at 8,038. Rifle had nearly doubled in population from its 1990 population of 4,636, when Glenwood Springs was already at 6,561.According to a story in the Post Independent in early October, a study conducted for Garfield County shows that the city of Rifle and its surrounding areas will have nearly twice the population of the Glenwood Springs area by 2030. The Glenwood area will be home to about 22,215 people by then, compared to 43,859 for the Rifle area, the study predicts.All of Garfield County now is home to about 50,000 people. The countywide number would increase to 139,000 by 2030 under a scenario tentatively being projected by Denver-based BBC Researching & Consulting. That’s midway between a projection last year of 148,000 by the state Demographer’s Office, and its later, more conservative estimate of 130,000, a reduction reflecting fast-rising housing costs in western Garfield County.U.S. Bank representatives said adding a location in or near Rifle is something the company is interested in. However, the company has not yet formulated plans or entered into any deals or negotiations to do that.”U.S. Bank would be interested in making a foray into any of those three areas,” including Rifle, Silt or New Castle, U.S. Bank Market President Clayton Collier said.”We’re always looking. … Would I like a solution there? Sure,” Gunderson said. “I do not have one yet.”This fall, U.S. Bank, which had two branches in Glenwood, found itself with an extra branch at 1901 Grand Ave. and a lease on a 1,900-square-foot space in the Citizen’s Bank Building at 801 Grand Ave., right across the street from U.S. Bank’s 802 Grand Ave. branch. It acquired them when U.S. Bank’s parent corporation purchased WestStar Bank’s parent corporation in a $98.6 million deal that closed in September. U.S. Bank does not plan to open another branch at 801 Grand Ave. An owner of the Citizen’s Bank Building said an agreement might be worked out where U.S. Bank is let out of the lease.”I don’t know that we would ordinarily put in two branches in a town of about 8,000,” Collier said.But the 1901 Grand Ave. location is a welcome addition.At the downtown location, “if somebody wanted to go make a deposit, parking is a real challenge,” said Steve Gunderson, regional president for western Colorado, adding that there’s ample parking at the 1901 Grand Ave. location.The three locations in Glenwood Springs are not overkill, according to Collier and Gunderson. The two full-bank branches are seeing plenty of business, and neither the 1901 Grand Ave. branch nor the 802 Grand Ave. downtown branch would close in the future.”They’re both very busy,” Gunderson said.U.S. Bank might close its drive-in location at 14th and Grand, however. “I think the general feeling is not to keep it,” Gunderson said. “But we’re not ready to make that move yet.” That move would probably be contingent upon adding additional drive-through banking lanes at the 1901 Grand Ave. location. If the 14th and Grand location did close, employees would be moved to one of the other locations.”Everyone keeps their jobs,” Collier said.Contact Pete Fowler: 945-8515, ext. 16611pfowler@postindependent.comPost Independent, Glenwood Springs Colorado CO


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