First National Bank of NWA secures land to build Fayetteville branch

by Paul Gatling (pgatling@nwabj.com) 698 views 

First National Bank of NWA (FNBNWA) has acquired land in Fayetteville to build a new banking center.

FNBNWA paid $550,000 ($17.78 per square foot) for a 0.71-acre parcel on Steele Boulevard, south of JJ’s Beer Garden & Brewing Co.

Jody Thornton, through his FAYMJET LLC, was the seller.

Rob Husong, president of FNBNWA, said the bank will build a roughly 8,500-square-foot branch at the site, with construction set to begin in early 2019. It will replace the existing Fayetteville branch at 2638 Joyce Blvd, a leased office space that opened in December 2014.

“We have been looking for a permanent site [in Fayetteville] ever since we opened that location,” Husong said. “We feel like this is a great spot.”

Core Architects of Rogers is leading the design. Bates & Associates of Fayetteville is the civil engineer.  A builder has not been selected, Husong said.

First National Bank of NWA is a division of First National Bank of Fort Smith, which was chartered in 1872 and has 13 branches in the Fort Smith metro. The company has six branches in Benton and Washington counties: Rogers (2), Bentonville, Centerton, Lowell and Fayetteville.

As of March 31, First National Bank of Fort Smith held $1.32 billion in assets. The company entered the Northwest Arkansas market in 2004 with the acquisition of Bank of Rogers and its holding company, BOR Bancshares Inc., for $26.5 million.

Last year, FNBNWA opened its central branch location in downtown Bentonville’s Arts District. Husong said the new Washington County banking office will be similar in size and also have space to sublease, but the design will be unique to Fayetteville.

“We will want to figure out the best way to engage the community like we did with our Bentonville location,” Husong said. “We’re not 100 percent set on what that is going to look like, but it will be something that people can come to and see that this is a bank that knows the community.”

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