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SeaComm announces plans to consolidate Massena operations, build new Malone branch

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MASSENA - SeaComm Board Chairman Myron Burns, along with President and Chief Executive Officer Scott A. Wilson, announced plans on Wednesday to consolidate its Massena retail operations, expand its headquartersand break ground on a new building for the Malone branch.

The Massena consolidation and expansion will begin early 2014, with a conclusion date of mid-2015; whereas the Malone groundbreaking will commence in early 2016.

“Our membership has grown more than 20 percent over the past six years; however the number of transactions at our teller line has decreased,” Mr. Wilson said.“Due mainly to technology and members using direct deposit or other electronic channels offered, such as NetTeller, Mobile App, ATMs and soon to be added Mobile Deposit Capture, the merging of our Massena locations will allow us to be more efficient, whereby we can put those resources back into additional products and services, at no cost to the membership.”

The 30 Stearns St. building will receive an additional 15,870 square feet to accommodate merging of the 79 Main St. branch, Call Center and the additional staff necessary to support the expanded service offerings and regulatory requirements.

“Today, we do not have adequate office space necessary to support future initiatives,” Mr. Wilson said.“The benefits of this option will also enable all back office operations to be in one main location assisting us with an increase in communication and decreased travel time between buildings, which will allow us to grow internal staff more efficiently along with membership growth.”

The project will take the form of a two-story addition on the back of the building with a second floor addition to continue over the existing branch, providing a full two-story building all the way around.The renovations will consist of expanded drive-thru lanes; adding of concierge and self-serve Kiosks; moving all member-related services to retail space; expanded employee parking; provision of adequate office and conference space for growth and refreshing the main building.

The merging of the Call Center on Andrews Street and closing of the downtown branch location at 79 Main St., will take place once construction at the headquarter building has been completed.P.W. Campbell of Pittsburgh, PA, will serve as the credit union’s building design firm.

“As part of our strategic direction, the Board of Directors, in conjunction with the management team, has recognized the necessity to expand our headquarters in order to accommodate the credit union’s overall growth,” Board Chairman Myron Burns said.“This $5.1 million project approved by the Board of Directors is a testament to our commitment to Massena and our membership by ensuring we are providing exceptional state-of-the-art services and financial products for many years to come.”

The 79 Main St. location was purchased in 1999 from Heritage Homes, which was used at the time as an extension for the now closed Mater Dei College.The current ATM access at the downtown location will be available through mid-2015.Discussions continue as to the probability of its relocation to an alternate area.

“It is important to know that SeaComm is still committed to the revitalization of downtown Massena and will continue to support the mission and on-going efforts of the Greater Massena Chamber of Commerce and its related activities,” Mr. Wilson said.

Continued project updates will also be available regularly on SeaComm’s website, Facebook page and Twitter.Mr. Wilson will also make himself available to the membership from 3 to 4 p.m. Mondayand 11 a.m. to noon Sept. 20at the 79 Main St. Branch to discuss any questions.

Property purchase for the Malone branch relocation was finalized in May of this year and construction will begin in 2015.The property is a 1.4-acre lot, located on Route 11 adjacent to Mo’s Pub and Grill, and in front of The Holiday Inn Express.

SeaComm is planning to construct a 3,000-square-foot building.The current SeaComm branch is located in the Price Chopper Plaza under a lease agreement through mid-2016.

“Owning our own location adds long-term value to the organization,” Mr. Wilson said.“This new venue will give us additional visibility in a high traffic location in an ever-expanding retail area.”

Rick Maloney, Malone branch manager will be part of the overall planning of the new location.

SeaComm is a member owned financial cooperative based in Massena with more than 40,000 members and assets of more than $470 million. The credit union has branches in Massena, Potsdam, Malone, Canton and Ogdensburg.Membership is open to anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in St. Lawrence or Northern Franklin County.

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