FLORENCE — The Shoals’ newest bank broke ground Wednesday for its main office.
Progress Bank and Trust will open a permanent office this fall at the corner of Tennessee Street and Wood Avenue downtown.
“We wanted to be downtown. There is a lot of opportunity on this street,” said Andy Mann, the bank’s Shoals Area president. “We have many local shareholders.”
Mann said Progress Bank, which will mark its fifth anniversary in February, has branches in Huntsville and Decatur. The bank has assets of $470 million, according to bank officials.
Progress has an office on South Seminary Street, and chose to make a deeper investment in the Shoals because of the strong retail and industrial growth, and good schools, Mann said.
The bank will be built on the site of the former Brinley Brothers restaurant, which was formerly a steak house. Rusty Carbine, contractor for the project, said his company built the original restaurant on the site of the old Reeder Hotel.
“We built the Western Sizzler steak house using bricks from the old Reeder Hotel,” he said. Some of those bricks will be incorporated into the new bank building, he said.
Mann said the bank will have open areas and a community room that will be available for events.
Steve Holt, president of the Shoals Chamber of Commerce, said Progress Bank’s decision to build downtown is a sign that the local economy is strong.
“We want to thank you for investing in our community and seeing the opportunity here,” he said during the ground breaking.
Robert Palmer can be reached at 256-740-5720 or robert.palmer@TimesDaily.com.