Bank On It: Chase Replaces Coldwell Banker in Center

Photo: The future home of Chase in Belmont.

Even James Holzhauer could come up with the question to this Jeopardy! answer: “An endless number.”

The question: “How many banks branches can fit in Belmont Center?”

The latest financial outpost to stake a claim in the “Town of Homes” is the US’s largest bank as JPMorgan Chase & Co. is filing permits with town departments to create an office at 7 Channing Rd. in the former Coldwell Banker office, according to town officials.

Chase is joining branch offices of six banks in Belmont’s business hub: Bank of America, Citizens Bank, Cambridge Savings Bank, Santander Bank, and People’s United Bank which completed its acquisition of Belmont Savings Bank this month.

Old-timers remember the site, owned by Retail Site Processing of Bedford, as an Exxon service station until 1996. For a decade it housed convenience stores (including a 7-11 franchise) before closing in 2006. The 15,600 sq.-ft. building became the Coldwell Banker location in 2007.

Coldwell Banker is relocating to the former Boston Musician Association’s office at 130 Concord Ave.

Chase’s retail banking division entered the Boston market last year concentrating in Boston with a branch and three ATMs. They have also added automated tellers along the Mass Pike in the last year.

In the past month, the financial behemoth (with $2.623 trillion in assets (2018)) converting one of few remaining Friendly’s restaurants located in the Watertown Mall on Arsenal Street as well as opening a branch in Dedham across from the Legacy Place mall. Belmont would be the first suburban office not linked to a large retail center.

The current retail strategy by the New York City-based multinational investment bank and financial services company run by CEO Jamie Dimon of opening 400 branches from Boston to Washington DC. with 50 in eastern Massachusetts runs counter to market trends as most banks are closing offices as banking functions are increasingly being performed online.

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