Originally created 09/23/99

Bank of America seeks new corporate office

Bank of America, formerly NationsBank, is planning to move into new corporate offices in downtown Augusta by next year, Regional President Jim Tyler said Wednesday.

The bank is considering two or three locations.

"We want to be part of the solution to downtown redevelopment," Mr. Tyler said. "I believe in downtown."

Bank of America's corporate offices are currently located on Broad Street in a building now owned by Morris Communications Corp., the parent company of The Augusta Chronicle. The building, which was owned by NationsBank, was sold to Morris Communications about two years ago, Mr. Tyler said.

The bank has been looking for a downtown location ever since.

The bank used to own the large downtown building because it once needed space. Hundreds of employees worked at the central office. Technology and consolidation changed that. The corporate offices for this area have about 15 workers.

Bank of America plans to buy or lease property before the end of the year.

But don't expect to see the Bank of America Tower, Mr. Tyler added. The new building, which may cost more than $1 million, will probably be only about 10,000 square feet.

The bank may build a larger office and lease space to a few tenants, but it does not expect to build another tall, downtown building.

One location that Bank of America is considering is at Broad and 13th streets, where a BP gas station was located. Julian Osbon now owns it.

"They like that intersection," Mr. Osbon said. "It's a high profile, high traffic intersection."

Ironically, it is also across the street from a former NationsBank branch, also owned by Mr. Osbon. The branch was sold in the early 1990s, Mr. Tyler said.

Reach Frank Witsil at (706) 823-3352.


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