Thursday, March 10, 2011

Union Savings and Loan (1958)

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The Union Savings and Loan Association (established 1866) embarked on a significant expansion and renovation of their main office in 1958.

The five-story Union Savings and Loan building at Carondelet and Perdido streets was enlarged and completely re-modeled by Harry Banker Smith of August Perez and Associates. For the exterior Smith composed bands of vertical black porcelain enamel panels, turquoise mosaic tile, Italian marble and aluminum-framed glass in a minimalist fashion.

The Times-Picayune reported on the , "The main feature of the lobby is the large curved marble and formica counter which is capable of serving several lines of persons at a time. Walnut paneling, glass partitions, custom-built furnishings and terrazzo floors, with floral arrangements and hand-painted art on the walls are included."

The custom cabinetry, designed and built by Riecke Cabinet Works, remains largely intact. Riecke (established 1905) also built custom furnishings for the National American Bank branch at Lee Circle (razed 2007) and the main court room of the Supreme Court Building in the Civic Center (razed 2008).

[F. Stock; photo: E. Ardoin]

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