The new Oak Ridge branch of ORNL Federal Credit Union opened Tuesday. Officials and executives celebrated with a ribbon-cutting on Monday.
It’s the new main Oak Ridge branch, and it’s at 215 South Rutgers Avenue. That’s where ORNL Federal Credit Union had its original headquarters, right next to where the current headquarters are.
The main Oak Ridge branch was in the current headquarters buildingÂ until this week.
The new branch building has extended drive-through hours: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday (lobby will close at noon).
“This is a great addition to our community,” Oak Ridge Mayor Warren Gooch said at Monday’s ribbon-cutting.
Among the changes at the new 5,400-square-foot branch building are interactive teller machines, or ITMs, in both the drive-through and lobby. The ITMs feature an on-screen teller who works on the second floor of the headquarters building next door. The ITMs work somewhat like an automated teller machine, or ATM, but with a person involved on the other end of the transaction. The teller can remotely read your identification and checks, for example, and send you a receipt with a printed copy of your scanned checks.
The ITMs can accept checks and payments, and help with transfers. Unlike the setup in the old drive-through, they do not use vacuum tubes to send and receive cash, checks, and documents.
The ITMs are secure, efficient, and personal,Â said ORNL Federal Credit Union President and Chief Executive Officer Colin Anderson.
With the seven new ITMs in Oak Ridge, the credit union now has 20 ITMs total at its 32 branches.
The credit union broke ground on the new branch building in Oak Ridge in June 2015. It features six traditional offices and desks that encourage employees to work next toâ€”rather than across fromâ€”credit union members, Anderson said. It also featuresÂ coves where members can engage in “relaxed banking,” which is something members have requested, Anderson said.
“We’re trying to encourage that,” he said.
Fourteen tellers will work in the single-story building, Anderson said. The new branch is on a six-acre parcel, and some of that land was acquired from Realty Executives.
Anderson said the new building has 2,300 high-tech safe deposit boxes, where members can store jewelry and important documents, among other items. The safe deposit boxes are located in a biometric, self-serve vault that checks fingerprints.
Paying homage to its previous employees, ORNL Federal Credit Union included some brick from its original building on the new building. And with the city’s permission, they used the same address.
“I’m just proud of it,” said Marcy Catron, ORNL Federal Credit Union board chair. “I think it’s just such a showpiece. The entire board is very proud of it.”
She said all branches could eventually look more like the new Oak Ridge branch.
Now, credit union executives plan to remodel the three-story, 55,000-square-foot headquarters building next door. That work could start in March. ORNL Federal Credit Union is consolidating operations, some of which are now on Mitchell Road and Broadway in Oak Ridge.
During the Monday ribbon-cutting, Anderson presented a $1,000 check to the Oak Ridge Recreation and Parks Department. And he said the credit union is working with Dogwood Arts on arts outside in public places. Artwork called “Lunar Eclipse” is currently on display at the new branch. Anderson said the display will change once a year.
Credit union employees are also working on event planning at the new branch, Anderson said.
Officials said about 60 percent of consumer banking in Oak Ridge is conducted at credit unions, and ORNL Federal Credit Union is the largest.
The credit union has $1.7 billion in assets, Anderson said.
“We are the largest credit union in East Tennessee,” he said.
There is another Oak Ridge branch, and it’s inside of Walmart.
More information will be added as itÂ becomes available.
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