Greenwich Savings Bank
Greenwich Savings Bank
Sixth Avenue facade
|Location||1352-1362 Broadway, Manhattan, New York City|
|Architect||York & Sawyer|
|Architectural style||Classical Revival|
|NRHP reference #||05001286|
|Added to NRHP||November 16, 2005|
|Designated NYCL||March 3, 1992|
The Greenwich Savings Bank was an American savings bank based in New York City that operated from 1833 to 1981. At the time of its closure in 1981, it was the 16th largest bank in the U.S. by total deposits.
By the time of bank deregulation in 1980, the bank started having big losses. In 1981, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the New York State Banking Department sought buyers for the bank. In October of that year, a participant in a meeting about possible buyers left material on the meeting table. This information was given to The New York Times, which printed the story.
In its final three days, the bank lost $500 million in deposits out of its total of $1.5 billion due to a run on the bank. At the end of the third day, the New York State Banking Department closed the bank, naming the FDIC as receiver. That same day Metropolitan Savings Bank of Brooklyn was named the new owner of the bank accounts. Three years later, the combined bank was renamed Crossland Federal Savings Bank, which failed in 1992 and was seized by the FDIC. Shares in Crossland were offered to the public in 1993; Crossland was acquired by Republic New York in 1995.
In 1922-24, the bank constructed its new headquarters at the intersection of Broadway and West 36th Street in Midtown Manhattan. The steel-reinforced limestone and sandstone building was designed by noted bank architects York and Sawyer in a Classical Revival style with monumental Corinthian columns on three sides of the building, rusticated walls and a Roman-style dome.
The interior was embellished with ten-foot-tall brass foyer doors, a board room and executive office with rubbed-oak paneling and soapstone fireplaces, and an elliptical banking room with limestone Corinthian columns, granite walls, a marble floor, a bronze tellers' screen with sculptures of Minerva (symbolizing wisdom) and Mercury (representing commerce), and a coffered, domed ceiling with a 3,000-square-foot (280 m2) stained-glass skylight.
An event management company leases several of the Haier Building's large historic rooms, which are operated as the venue Gotham Hall. The old main banking room, board room and executive office are rented out as the "Grand Ballroom", "Oak Room", and "Green Room", for corporate events, private parties such as weddings and receptions, and other functions.
In popular culture
Based on the commercials run on local TV at the end of the 1970s and into the 1980s, the bank was referred to as "The Greenwich Savings Bank", with the pronunciation as "GREENwich", rather than the more commonly pronounced Greenwich Street, which is referred to as 'grenich'.
In the 2008 remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still, the coordinates for the "Impact Location" that appears on the big screen (Lat 40.75136, Long -73.98712) falls on the Haier Building. It is unknown if the writers intended to choose this location on purpose. The film Going in Style starring George Burns and Art Carney also used this location in the scene where they robbed a bank.
- National Register of Historic Places listings in New York County, New York
- List of New York City Designated Landmarks in Manhattan from 14th to 59th Streets
- "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. March 13, 2009.
- Bennett, Robert A. (November 5, 1981). "Greenwich Acquisition Concluded". The New York Times. pp. D1.
- Division of Research and Statistics "The Mutual Savings Bank Crisis" in History of the Eighties - Lessons for the Future. Washington, D.C.: Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, 1997. ISBN 0-9661808-0-1
- Bennett, Robert A. (October 29, 1981). "U.S. is Said to Seek Bank Merger to Save Greenwich Savings". The New York Times. pp. A1.
- Quint, Michael (1992-01-25). "Crossland Is Seized By the U.S." The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2015-03-08.
- Republic Bank Will Acquire CrossLand Savings For $530 Million
- White, Norval; Willensky, Elliot & Leadon, Fran (2010), AIA Guide to New York City (5th ed.), New York: Oxford University Press, ISBN 9780195383867, p.266
- "Architecture & Heritage". Gotham Hall. Retrieved 2011-08-18.
- "Gotham Hall New York". Gotham Hall. Retrieved 2011-08-18.
- New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission; Dolkart, Andrew S.; Postal, Matthew A. (2009), Postal, Matthew A. (ed.), Guide to New York City Landmarks (4th ed.), New York: John Wiley & Sons, ISBN 978-0-470-28963-1, p.94
- Media related to Greenwich Savings Bank Building at Wikimedia Commons