LIVERMORE FALLS — Residents want another bank to take the place of Androscoggin Bank when it closes its branch on Main Street in June, Town Manager Kristal Flagg said this week.
“The community really wants (a bank) there,” she said. “They are asking for one.”
The only bank in town announced it would close the branch as of 2 p.m. June 28 and transfer all accounts to its banking center in Jay. Melissa Rock, marketing manager, said the Jay branch is less than three miles away, offers extended hours, including Saturdays, and is near Hannaford supermarket.
She said online banking by computer and mobile banking by smartphone or tablet computers have reduced branch transactions, prompting the bank to look at its structure and products to keep the business healthy and viable.
“We realize everyone needs to look out for their own business but it's a concern for the people,” Flagg said.
Businesses rely on the bank being just a short walk away. And businesses and tenants in the bank building itself are only an elevator ride away from conducting their banking business, she said.
Thomas Wright, who owns the Androscoggin Bank building in Livermore Falls, has asked if the town would support another bank in the space, Flagg said. He's done a lot of work on the building but since it's privately owned it's out of town hands, she said.
"I fully hope to find another banking institution to continue the legacy of the building and become the anchor to the community again," Wight said in an email Wednesday. "Presently the bank can hold the space empty until 2015," he said.
News of the closing came as a surprise to him and other tenants of the building, he said.
"For over 100 years, the bank and bank building has been the community center of Livermore Falls," Wright said.
He purchased the building in 2010, intending to restore it, and with other projects, create a pedestrian-friendly downtown community.
There are 26 apartments, a dentist's office, an eye doctor's office, a hair salon, an insurance company and other businesses in the building.
"The bank was the common bond for all of these places," he said.