Story last updated at 11/25/2008 - 4:35 pm
Juneau - KeyBank has announced the completion of its year-long major remodel of its Behrends Branch at 234 Seward Street in Juneau on Nov 18.
A ceremonial ribbon-cutting and reception took place Nov. 20 to mark the date, according to branch manager Wesley Schutt.
The exterior repair and roof replacement work at the branch was completed in early summer. Since then, work has focused on installing new interior improvements and technology features that will enhance the customer banking experience, Schutt added.
KeyBank clients will experience a new teller line and lobby that will pave the way for the bank's new Teller 21 technology.
Customers also will be entertained and informed by a pair of large flat-screen video monitors behind the tellers. Early 20th Century furniture and trim has been refinished and lighting fixtures that reflect the original era were installed. A new conference room will ensure privacy for client meetings.
"All these enhancements are designed with one thing in mind - to produce an improved customer experience at Key's Behrends Branch," Schutt said. "This revitalization project is symbolic of Key's commitment to Juneau and Alaska."
One thing that will remain the same is the original vault from the 1880s will remain in use.
Originally constructed in 1914 for B. M. Behrends Bank, the building is considered to be one of downtown Juneau's historic buildings and is one block from the Alaska State Capitol.
Juneau Mayor Bruce Botelho of the City of Juneau issued a proclamation naming Nov. 20, 2008 as "Behrends KeyBank Day" in honor of the completed modernization and preservation project by Key.
The enhancements are part of a multi-year, nationwide program during which two-thirds of Key's 950 branches are being refurbished or completely remodeled.
Most importantly, the remodeled branch will allow for new teller technology that will place better information in the hands of tellers quickly, freeing up time for them to advise and interact with clients, according to Schutt.
Behind the scenes, processing and handling time will be significantly reduced. For example, a check brought to the branch would once have been handled up to 12 times by tellers, proof operators and others involved in the processing function. With Teller 21, that check will be handled only once.
Key's branch revitalization program reflects the continued importance of bank branches to consumers and businesses, who increasingly seek a mix of channels so that they have the flexibility to conduct their banking business when, where and how it is most convenient for them.
The bank was built by Bernard M. Behrends in 1914 to house the banking operation that he established in 1891. Prior to building at the current location, Behrends Bank operated across the street under the same roof as B.M. Behrends Mercantile Company.
Key has operated at this location since it acquired the assets of B.M. Behrends Bank in 1989. This is the second major remodel that KeyBank has undertaken in this 12,000 foot office.
The branch building offers a walk-up ATM and houses a variety of banking services that include traditional retail banking, investment services, private banking, and small business banking.
KeyCorp, one of the nation's largest bank-based financial services companies, has assets of approximately $101 billion. Key companies provide investment management, retail and commercial banking, consumer finance, and investment banking products and services to individuals and companies throughout the United States and, for certain businesses, internationally.