Patrons of the First National Bank and Trust Company will find business even easier to conduct with the March 23 opening of a new Evans branch.
The branch, at 4321 Washington Road, offers full-service banking, including mortgage origination services. The 3,000-square-foot building, which has been renovated, offers customers a convenient location in a busy area of Evans, said Lee Clark, senior vice president for First National Bank and Trust Company.
"The widening of Washington Road really made the property much more accessible both from Washington Road and North Belair Road," Clark said, noting that the new turn lane on Washington allows entrance to the bank even during peak traffic times.
The building, constructed in 1986, has housed two banks but has been vacant for about a year. The last bank to occupy the building, First Union, underwent a merger and moved its operations to the nearby Wachovia Bank branch on Washington Road.
When First National Bank and Trust Company acquired the property from a real estate investment trust, the area was overgrown with weeds and generally unattractive.
That's all changed now with a three-month renovation.
"To see the improvement in the property is heartening and satisfying," said Gordon Renshaw, executive director of the Columbia County Chamber of Commerce.
"Evans Town Center is an area Columbia County residents take a lot of pride in," said Renshaw, whose office abuts the property.
Transformations didn't stop with fresh landscaping and a refurbished exterior. The interior is also new with plush blue carpet, dark wood furnishings and taupe walls accented by heavy framed art. Fresh flowers and plants decorate the lobby.
Though the building may be pleasant, it's the people who make the difference, Clark said.
"We've got some really good people with good hearts," Clark said, noting "all of our employees are local seasoned bankers with years of experience."
Clark, who has been in Augusta banking more than 20 years, oversees all local branches, including those at Grovetown, Columbia Road and Tobacco Road.
At least one more branch is planned, which will be on the Furys Ferry corridor, Clark said.
The 100-year-old First National Bank and Trust Company, headquartered in Louisville, Ga., operates 21 branches across the state and holds $502 million in assets. It's a rurally-based bank with strong commitments to local communities and customer service, bank officials said.
"Our main focus is being part of the community," Clark said.
"They are generous with their resources and time," Renshaw agreed, noting the bank is active in various not-for-profit projects.
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.