Banks occupy Broadway as HomeStreet takes over former cafe

From the 2012 #MicCheckWallSt “Money Doesn’t Talk” protest (Image: CHS)

If 2011’s arrival of the Occupy movement on Broadway represented a small battle in the war against the profligate ways of the global financial system, what does this announcement from HomeStreet Bank represent?

HomeStreet Opening New Bank Branch on Vibrant Capitol Hill

SEATTLE – HomeStreet Bank, a subsidiary of HomeStreet, Inc. (NASDAQ:HMST), today announced the opening of a new retail bank branch in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle, Wash. The branch will be located at 700 Broadway East in the heart of a dynamic, densely populated residential and retail district. 


The Capitol Hill neighborhood is one of the oldest in Seattle and is home to a thriving restaurant scene, numerous small businesses and theaters. The area is a mix of older, stately homes, apartment buildings and condominiums, and draws a large amount of foot traffic from the immediate vicinity as well as from other parts of the city. Capitol Hill is known as a welcoming community for a diverse range of families, cultures and artists and for annual events produced by the Seattle International Film Festival and Seattle Pride. 

The announcement follows last week’s confirmation that Wells Fargo is constructing its first Broadway branch inside the Broadway Market shopping center to join what is already a rich selection of banking opportunities along this stretch of the neighborhood including Bank of America’s new 6,000 square-foot facility.

HomeStreet’s new home bumped Cafe Kanape from the street. Kanape’s owner announced she got an offer she “couldn’t refuse” and pulled up stakes late last year. So much for the camera shop rumor.

The new tenant is part of an overhaul of the aesthetically-challenged 700 Broadway building following its sale last summer for $20.25 million. We’re checking on how many employees will work at the branch.

“Our new branch will provide Capitol Hill residents and businesses with a Seattle-based community banking alternative that is a natural fit in a progressive neighborhood that proudly supports its local businesses,” said Paulette Lemon, senior vice president and retail banking manager, in the HomeStreet announcement.

The branch is planned to open by the end of April.

Occupy recruiting on Broadway in October, 2011 (Image: CHS)

12 thoughts on “Banks occupy Broadway as HomeStreet takes over former cafe

  1. Home street, Wells, Umpqua, BECU, Chase, BoA, US Bank. From north of Roy all the way to John. Is this a bubble? Can this part of the hill really support that many?

  2. Lamenting about this is like closing the doors to the barn after the horse is long gone 20 miles down the road. The change you speak of not only includes banks, but condos, major chain restaurants, 6 story mega building (like Joule and Lyric) and strollers and babies and hipsters, oh my!
    Broadway and most of Capitol Hill was grimy and left for dead as folks fled to the suburbs after WW II. Until the early 90’s, Freddie Mercury and Village People clones lived here and we made it the place to flock to for “artists” etc. It was heady time indeed.

    So if there is ire to be spewed, I say there are too many “Bait Shops”
    “Poppy” and Pho and Tobacco shops.

    Change happens people, deal with it..

    Who ever is complaining about “banks” is just cashing in on the protest ‘du jour” movement that seems to attract dim bulbs and twenty somethings..yawn.

  3. If any of you scoffers would read beyond the word “bank” you should see:
    “HomeStreet Bank is one of the largest community banks in the Northwest and Hawaii”

    That’s exactly what you like, local companies doing good and opening on the hill! Stop crying mega chain, when you don’t even bother to see its a local company!!

  4. It’s unsurprising that big banks want and can afford to occupy half the real estate on Broadway.

    What’s disgusting is that given the history of the past tend years, anyone is willing to do business with them.

    As usual, the solution couldn’t be simpler: refuse patronize irresponsible businesses, encourage everyone you know to do the same, and remind everyone that supporting organizations which abuse and exploit you is stupid. BECU is a terrific local financial institution with competitive rates, extraordinarily good service, and a branch in the Broadway Market.

  5. No one is ever in there. The two tellers just stand around all day.

    Also, why does Bank America need 6000 sf? Most people do there banking online and at a cash machine.

    Do we really need this many banks?

  6. Sorry to break it to you, but you and other “occupy-types” have lost this battle. Yes, some people switched to credit unions (because it was the trendy thing to do at the time) but many more stuck with the “big banks.” I am confident that the banks’ abuses of the past, at least as far as the mortgage business, are no longer possible and will not recur.

    These new banks locating on Broadway would not be doing so if there wasn’t a market for their services. And at least they seem to be more local……think of it this way, that perhaps they will be taking some business away from the “evil” BOA and Chase.

  7. Some of the wording in that press release sounds like something I wrote either on a blog or Wikipedia years ago. It’s all good.

    It’s interesting how this article ties in with the rent increase article. I would like to read a story on who is occupying these new pricey apartments, where they bank, and where they are working to make the money to afford this rent.