When people walked through the front doors of the new Dolores State Bank on March 7, the first thing they usually did was gasp.
Ruth Hoffman stopped in during the first banking day in the new building to deposit some money, and she was beside herself.
It is fascinating, absolutely gorgeous, she said.
Then her phone rang.
Its breathtaking, she told the person on the other end.
Hoffman said she was excited to see the bank and was happy that Dolores had such a nice addition.
Shawna Valdez, spokeswoman for the bank, said employees were thrilled to open the bank up to the public and to begin working in the new building, which started construction last spring.
Over the previous weekend, employees moved into the new 10,141-square-foot building in order to be ready for opening day.
Its almost like having a new job, Valdez said about working in the new building.
Other employees joked about having to go up and down the stairs in the two-story building, saying they were starting their exercise plan that day.
Linnea Vass stopped by the bank Monday morning and said she was impressed.
I think its beautiful, she said. Its nice and open and inviting, and a good addition to the community.
Karla Haley also stopped into the bank Monday morning.
Its beautiful, she said.
Haley added that she has enjoyed watching the progress on the building every day for the little less than a year that it took to build.
Project Superintendent Jack Stuart, of Jaynes Corp. was busy snapping pictures of the bank Monday and sending them to the main office.
Its finally done, he said with a smile.
A few finishing touches were still being completed March 8. Someone was tinkering with the gas fireplace in the lobby, and a few fixtures still needed to be attached. But overall, when people first walked into the lobby Monday, they could notice the rock wall, tile floor, wood teller line, and large chandelier hanging above from the second story. They also could notice the large amount of light that filled the lobby.
Stuart said the work isnt entirely complete. Landscaping still needs to be done, and a parking lot needs to be built. The old, 50-plus-year-old brick bank building will be torn down, and a parking lot will be built in its place.
We will probably be completely finished around mid-May, Stuart said.