Commission approves bank refurbishing plans
by Jonathan Partridge | Patterson Irrigator
Sep 16, 2010 | 893 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Patterson’s planning commission unanimously gave a thumbs-up Thursday, Sept. 9, to plans for upgrading the downtown US Bank building to make it earthquake-safe. At the same time, commissioners encouraged the bank to restore the structure’s historical authenticity.

“I’m not saying put a whole lot of money into it, but a little detail can go a long way,” commission chairman Pat Dooley told Jerry Gabriel of San Francisco-based RMW Architecture & Interiors.

The 81-year-old, 6,275-square-foot building at 13 Plaza houses both the bank and Patterson Chiropractic Center.

The bank had the building inspected about a year ago and learned the structure’s brick masonry walls are unsafe, Gabriel said.

The structure stands in the city’s Historic Preservation Overlay District, which the city created in 1996 to allow for extra review of structures and areas that reflect Patterson’s heritage.

The bank has no old photos of the building, Gabriel said. Still, he said the bank aims to make the building attractive but still keep the cost of upgrades within budget restraints.

Commissioner Ron West asked whether the upgrades would allow one of the bank’s walls to bear a mural, as the bank was unable to display a centennial-themed painting on the building last year because of earthquake safety worries.

Gabriel replied that the retrofitted wall could be painted, although ultimately the bank would make that decision.

US Bank Branch manager Ellen Calmettes said this week that the new design should be an attractive addition to downtown.

“It’s going to look just as good if not better than City Hall,” she said.

Contact Jonathan Partridge at 892-6187 or jonathan@pattersonirrigator.com.

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