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Northwest Bank to open Orchard Park branch

Northwest Bank plans to add a branch in the Town of Orchard Park.

The Warren, Pa.-based bank is seeking approval from the state Department of Financial Services to open a 2,600-square-foot branch at 3858 North Buffalo Road. It will be Northwest’s ninth location in Erie and Niagara counties.

The town’s Planning Board in July authorized a building permit and granted site plan approval for the project. The developer, Ellicott Development, would demolish two residences and replace it with a one-story, 4,000-square-foot building, with space for the bank and an additional tenant.

Northwest plans to be in the new building by the end of the third quarter of 2016, said Melanie Clabaugh, a Northwest Bank spokeswoman.

Construction of new branches has become less common in the banking industry. Many banks are instead consolidating branches, as customers handle more transactions digitally and visit branches less often. In some cases, banks are relocating their branches into smaller spaces, without increasing the number of branches their network.

In the most recent figures from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., for June 30, Northwest Bank ranked seventh in deposit market share in the Buffalo Niagara region, with 0.6 percent. Northwest Bank earlier this year shortened its name from Northwest Savings Bank.

Northwest Bancshares, the parent company of Northwest Bank, last summer completed its acquisition of Ohio-based LNB Bancorp, the holding company of Lorain National Bank.