Credit union branch to open on Kalamazoo's west side

By the end of June, if not sooner, the newest branch location for KALSEE Credit Union will open its doors.

The new branch office of about 2,500 square feet has been in the works for about 18 months. It features an open layout that forgoes the usual teller windows and lines in favor of individual desks at which credit union members or prospective members can sit down to conduct transactions.

Those transactions can include deposits or withdrawls and even loan applications: Credit union employees have been trained to provide a number of different financial services, says Dennis Christensen, marketing and IT manager for KALSEE.

Another difference members will find is there is no till. Instead money that is deposited immediately is dropped into an electronic cash dispensing machine. There are two offices for those that need more privacy to conduct business than allowed in the open setting of the main office. A third office is for the branch manager.

The new branch also will have four drive-through lanes, a drive-through ATM, Saturday hours and a bike rack.

Depending upon the day and time, the branch will have up to nine employees working. Two were hired specifically for the new branch and others have transferred from one of KALSEE's other three branches.

KALSEE officials are excited about the potential of the new branch considering if you travel from Ninth Street to Stadium Drive, between Kalamazoo Valley Community College and downtown Kalamazoo, there is only one other credit union and it does not have frontage on Stadium, Christensen says.

"Our research told us we needed to be near the students," Christensen says. He says he expects some members who currently use other branches will now visit the new branch at Drake and Stadium, but primarily the branch was built after research showed students were underserved.

"There will be members coming to Drake Road from other branches," Christensen says, "but there will be a lot of new accounts opened, too."

Writer: Kathy Jennings, Second Wave Media
Source: Dennis Christensen, KALSEE Credit Union
Enjoy this story? Sign up for free solutions-based reporting in your inbox each week.