Familiar faces will staff new First Commonwealth Bank in Harrison | TribLIVE.com
Valley News Dispatch

Familiar faces will staff new First Commonwealth Bank in Harrison

Brian C. Rittmeyer
Brian C. Rittmeyer | Tribune-Review
First Commonwealth Bank’s newest location at Highlands Mall in Harrison on Thursday, Sept. 4, 2019. The bank, replacing the location in Heights Plaza, is scheduled to open on Monday, Sept. 9, 2019.
Brian C. Rittmeyer | Tribune-Review
Melissa Orr is the manager of First Commonwealth Bank in Harrison. She and her entire team are moving from the old bank in Heights Plaza to the newly built office opening at Highlands Mall in Harrison on Monday, Sept. 9, 2019. Photographed on Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2019.
Brian C. Rittmeyer | Tribune-Review
A drive-up ATM is a new feature at First Commonwealth Bank’s new branch at Highlands Mall in Harrison. Photographed on Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2019.

First Commonwealth Bank will be opening its new office in Harrison on Monday.

For customers unsure about the move 2 miles down Freeport Road, a familiar face will be there — Cheryl Rezak.

Rezak, 59, has worked at the bank in Heights Plaza shopping center for nearly 40 years. She was there before First Commonwealth, when it was Southwest Bank.

Rezak will be with her co-workers this weekend, packing up the old office at Heights Plaza and moving to the new building at the Highlands Mall.

“I’m excited,” Rezak said. “After being in the same building for that long, I’m ready for a change.”

Her manager, Melissa Orr, says many of her customers feel better about the move knowing that Rezak will be there.

“I love it. It’s just so open with so much natural light,” Orr said of the new location. “It will be convenient for a lot of people. The whole team is excited.”

Not counting its Green Tree location, rebuilt after a fire in 2018, the location in Harrison is the first new bank that Indiana, Pa.-based First Commonwealth has built from the ground up in more than a decade, according to Jesse Brocious, vice president of real estate and facilities manager for the bank.

The Green Tree location on Mansfield Avenue opened in June.

The Green Tree and Harrison locations are the only examples of the bank’s new prototype design, featuring a modern, open concept and more glass. While keeping a traditional teller line, it’s a departure from the monolithic structures banks have historically used.

“Banking has changed so much,” Brocious said. “It’s just not that way anymore. We want people to come in and have conversations.”

A ribbon-cutting ceremony is scheduled for between 2 and 3 p.m. Monday.

Brocious said First Commonwealth decided to build the new bank on a parcel near Walmart as its lease at Heights Plaza was ending.

“It’s not every day you see a new bank being built,” Brocious said.

At 2,100 square feet, the new bank is less than half of the size of the Heights Plaza office it replaces. With a reduced footprint, Brocious said it’s more sustainable and energy efficient. It sports LED lighting, including the ability to change the color of light in the glass tower outside and a circular fixture dominating the lobby inside.

The new bank will offer all of the same services and adds a drive-up ATM, Orr said. Its hours will be the same.

All of the employees at the plaza will be moving to the new bank, Orr said.

“All the customers were very happy to hear everyone was coming up here,” she said. “I couldn’t have a better team.”

Rezak said being there 40 years just kind of creeped up on her.

“I’ll be here until I retire,” she said. “I don’t know what else to do.”

With its acquisition of 14 Santander Bank locations recently completed, First Commonwealth will have 147 branches in Pennsylvania and Ohio, with the majority in Pennsylvania.

Brian C. Rittmeyer is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Brian at 724-226-4701, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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