The newest facility exemplifies rapid commercial growth.
AUSTINTOWN -- The grand opening of the township branch of Home Savings and Loan Co. continues the explosive commercial growth along Mahoning Avenue, township officials said.
Home Savings, a subsidiary of United Financial Corp., showed off its new 4,400-square-foot branch to community officials Monday. It's located at 6030 Mahoning Ave., in front of the Regal Cinema theaters.
The new branch, which cost nearly $1 million to build, replaces a 3,000-square-foot office located nearby in the Austintown Plaza.
Home Savings Chairman and CEO Douglas McKay said company facilities are constantly evaluated in an effort to provide better service.
"When we get to the point when one of our older facilities isn't really serving customers or providing the right image, then it's time, even if it means moving just a couple of hundred yards, to build a more modern facility that's really engineered to serve people better," McKay said.
Home Savings has 36 retail facilities and five production offices in Ohio and Pennsylvania. In the past four years it has expanded through a number of acquisitions and internal growth.
Township zoning inspector Mike Kurilla said the bank's expansion is indicative of the changes taking place in that area of the township.
Starting from Victoria Road and going east, Mahoning Avenue has become a corridor for banks and financial institutions, he said.
"There's a recognition of the trend in the western corner of Austintown rapidly developing and expanding," he said. The commercial expansion is mirrored by residential development going on in neighboring communities such as Berlin Center and North Jackson.
Township Trustee Lisa Oles expects commercial growth in Austintown to continue this year.
"We have been No. 1 in housing starts in the last nine years, and commercial growth in the township is also heading in that direction," she said.
Special place for kids
The new Home Savings branch has four drive-through lanes, including a drive-up ATM.
Raidel said the new office also features a special area with toys and books to occupy children's time while their parents are doing their banking.
The 116-year-old Home Savings has 700 employees and assets exceeding $2 billion dollars.