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MVB Bank to open first branch in city

MVB Bank is planning to open its first branch in Charleston.

The bank has applied to the Charleston Board of Zoning Appeals for a height variance for a downtown building, said Lori Brannon, Charleston neighborhood planner.

The bank is requesting permission to construct a 55-foot tall building at 400 Washington Street East across from the Town Center Mall/Marriott parking garage, Brannon said.

The site is located at the corner of Washington Street East and Margaret Street.  

The city's zoning ordinance states that companies planning on building higher than 45 feet in the area apply for the height variance, she said.

Calls to MVB Bank seeking comment on the project were not immediately returned.

BB&T formerly operated a drive-through bank at the location, said David White, vice president of corporate communications.

BB&T closed the drive-through bank in 2011. The property was then sold to MVB Bank in Dec. 2012, White said.

White would not say how much the property had sold for.    

MVB Bank's website says the branch located at 400 Washington Street East will be opening in 2013. The application submitted to the city board states that the building would be four stories tall, Brannon said.  

This will be the first MVB branch opened in the Kanawha Valley. MVB branches are located in the north central part of the state as well as in the Eastern Panhandle.

The bank currently does not have a branch open south of the Clarksburg/Bridgeport area on Interstate 79.  

Brannon did not have a cost estimate for the project. However, the site plan calls for a whole new building at the site, with the first floor reserved for the bank itself, she said.

"And then they (MVB) would have other office space to lease," Brannon said.

The proposed building wouldn't be the tallest in the area, she said.

Laidley Tower, which sits at the end of the block on the Lee Street East side, stands 225 feet off the ground, Brannon said.

The Marriott stands at 180 feet and Embassy Suites is 110 feet tall, she said.

Brannon would not say what the Planning Department staff would recommend to the board, saying those recommendations are not released until the day of the meeting.

However, she added that she has not received any complaints about the proposed project.

She also said Planning Department staff members do not believe the new building would cast a shadow on the neighborhood behind it.

The Board of Zoning Appeals will meet to discuss the issue on Thursday at 8:30 a.m. in the City Service Center conference room.

The City Service Center is located on the Corner of Virginia Street East and McFarland Street.

The board's decision on the matter is final, Brannon said.     

Contact writer Paul Fallon at paul.fallon@dailymail.com or 304-348-4817. Follow him at www.twitter.com/PaulBFallon.  


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