Northwest Georgia Bank broke ground on its 10th branch and Tennessee’s first “green” bank on Tuesday at Two North Shore on Manufacturer’s Road.
“The Two North Shore Branch will demonstrate Northwest Georgia Bank's commitment to the community and the environment,” said Scott Smith, president and COO.
The new branch is targeted for LEED Silver Certification and will be the first LEED-Certified, or ‘green,’ bank building in Tennessee, according to officials at the U.S. Green Building Council.
LEED is the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design rating system used to identify and measure high performance, environmentally responsible buildings. The design of the Two North Shore Branch incorporates such environmental strategies as 20 percent energy reduction, water conservation, reflective roofing and recycled materials.
The design will create a happy and healthy environment for customers and employees by attaining high standards for natural daylight and air quality, according to building designer Pat Neuhoff of Neuhoff Taylor Architects.
The building is partially funded with a grant from green|spaces, a partnership between the City of Chattanooga, RiverCity Company and the Lyndhurst Foundation, with additional resources from the Benwood Foundation and the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga. The partnership is a three-year green building initiative in Chattanooga that provides incentive funding for commercial projects to be built green; green|spaces also provides a resource center for commercial and residential projects showcasing the best eco-friendly materials and methods.
"It’s a delight to work with Northwest Georgia Bank on this project. They demonstrate a forward thinking and environmental responsibility that other companies in the area should emulate,” said Jeff Cannon, green|spaces initiative director. “By building such a sustainable building, Northwest is doing a great service not only to its customers but to the whole community."
At about 6,500 square feet, the new branch will offer full-service banking, investments by Raymond James Financial, mortgage services, Internet access, and free gourmet coffee. It is the fourth of several new branches planned for the Chattanooga area, with more in the works on Hwy. 58 and East Brainerd Road.
“We’ve been growing the right way for more than a century — one customer at a time — and growing ‘green’ is just smart business. Northwest has earned a reputation for quick, local decision-making, naturally friendly people and genuine devotion to the communities we serve,” Mr. Smith said. “The Northwest Way of banking has made us Chattanooga’s largest community bank, and this first green branch will fit perfectly with the city’s environmental efforts and the green|spaces initiative.”
The North Shore Branch is expected to open this September with a staff of approximately 15.