Columbia Bank relocates to downtown, shows permanent commitment to Redmond

Columbia Bank in Redmond has moved to a new, more visible location.

Columbia Bank in Redmond has moved to a new, more visible location.

The branch’s new building is at 16200 Redmond Way, which previously housed a Washington Federal bank branch. It opened about three weeks ago and a ribbon cutting ceremony was held Thursday evening to celebrate the new location.

Columbia has had a Redmond presence for 10 years, but vice president and branch manager Greg Todd said they were leasing at the old location; whereas the bank now owns the new location. He said this shows the community Columbia’s permanent commitment to being part of Redmond.

“It gives us a long-term presence,” Todd said.

The building at the new location was built about 40 years ago. So there was extensive remodeling done to update not just the design and color scheme, but the wiring and other utilities to bring everything up to code, Todd said. The new location is a bigger space and offers more services that weren’t available at the old location such as safe deposit boxes.

Todd said while they are in a new building, the bank’s employees have remained the same with the addition of one new employee — bringing the total to six employees.

Cynthia Gillespie, Columbia’s new employee, came to the bank at the end of November. She was hired to be the drive-thru teller, a position that did not exist at the previous location as drive-up services are another new feature now available at Columbia. The Redmond resident was previously working at another bank in town and said she loves that she has been able to maintain her “eight-minute commute.” Gillespie enjoys working in the community she lives in because she sees the people she serves outside of work and is able to get to know them more.

“I am so happy to be here,” she said.

Chris Hoffmann, chief executive officer and president for the Greater Redmond Chamber of Commerce, said Columbia’s new location and the fact that the bank owns the building is great. She said Columbia, which is based in Tacoma, is an incredible asset to the community as the bank and its employees are very involved in the community.

Some of the things Columbia staff have done include donating money to local schools to help provide supplies for students who need it and working on Habitat for Humanity projects in the area.

“They have a local approach,” Hoffmann said. “They’re a local bank.”