B of A's CityPlace II branch closing

BY Gregory Seay

Photo | HBJ File
Photo | HBJ File
Downtown Hartford's CityPlace II houses a Bank of America branch that will close next summer.
Bank of America says it's closing next summer its CityPlace II branch, one of its two left in downtown Hartford, bowing to changing customer habits.

The nation's No. 3 bank in assets and the biggest in Connecticut by deposits recently mailed out customer notices alerting them to the impending closing of the first-floor branch at 185 Asylum St., effective Aug. 28, 2018.

After that, B of A's two nearest branches will be downtown at 30 State House Square, and at 147 Washington St., in the South End. The bank did not indicate whether its automated teller machine, located in the CityPlace atrium, will stay. A spokesperson did not immediately respond to that question.

Aside from deposit-taking, checking-cashing and other services, the CityPlace II location also houses safe-deposit boxes. The bank said in its notice those customers will be contacted via a separate notice about what to do.

In all, only six B of A branches will continue operating within the city limits out of 46 that will remain in the Greater Hartford region, said spokesperson Tara Burke.

Burke said declining foot traffic at the CityPlace branch fueled the decision to shut it. She said more customers prefer to bank online via personal computers, smartphones and other mobile devices.

Burke declined to say how many branch employees are affected and whether they will stay with B of A after the office closes.

B of A and other large money-center banks across the nation have been shrinking their branch locations, while smaller, community banks have been expanding theirs.

United Bank, which recently relocated headquarters to downtown Hartford, is preparing to open a small, automated-teller-equipped branch in space fronting the Asylum Street side of CityPlace II, in a portion of space that was once a McDonald's restaurant.

CityPlace II's landlord could not be immediately reached Wednesday for comment.

CORRECTION: An earlier version incorrectly identified CityPlace II's landlord.