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Bank of Hawaii Reopens Historic Kohala Branch

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Honolulu, Hawaii (December 18, 2007) - Bank of Hawaii celebrated the reopening of its historic branch facility in Kohala (Kapa’au) on the Big Island yesterday with a traditional Hawaiian blessing.  The branch had been severely damaged in the October 2006 earthquake and was closed for structural renovations.  In the interim, the bank met the financial service needs of the community via a large mobile trailer outfitted with teller stations and ATMs.   

Art Taniguchi, Bank of Hawaii senior vice president and Hawaii regional manager, said, “We’re delighted to reopen the doors of our newly renovated Kohala Branch for the convenience of our customers. It took us a while to get everything done the way we wanted, but it was important for us and the community to retain the integrity of the original design. We’re proud of our longstanding service to this community and, by meeting current earthquake building codes, we plan to be here for the foreseeable future.” 

The original building was constructed around 1900. Bank of Hawaii purchased the building in 1922. The branch opened for business on Dec. 1, 1922 and has served the community since that time.

As part of the new design, a photovoltaic system has been installed which makes the building energy self-sufficient. The new system and roof panels were installed by Hoku Scientific. Over its lifetime, Hoku Scientific estimates that the system will produce equivalent electricity to power 50 homes for one year. 

Founded in 1897, Bank of Hawaii has 11 branches on the Big Island and a total of 71 branches within the state of Hawaii.

Other Recent Bank of Hawaii Branch Renovations

* Ala Moana Branch – The Ala Moana Branch recently completed a $2 million renovation just in time for the busy holiday shopping season. The 10-month renovation began in January and included creating a new sales platform area for customers, new exterior signage and inside lighting, and replacing the air conditioning system.  

* Waikiki International Banking Center – The bank is planning to open its new 4,600 s.f. International Banking Center in Waikiki during the first quarter of 2008.  The operations will be housed on the third floor of the Kalakaua Business Center at 2155 Kalakaua Ave. and will have more than 20 employees who have language capabilities in Chinese (Cantonese and Mandarin), Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese and French. 

* Mililani – Also set to open in the first quarter of 2008 is a new in-store branch at the Star Market in Mililani Town Center.   

* Maui – The Pukalani Branch will begin major renovations in January 2008 with work expected to be completed mid-year.