Silicon Valley Bank plans to open Cal. Ave. branch | July 15, 2022 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

News - July 15, 2022

Silicon Valley Bank plans to open Cal. Ave. branch

Bank would move into building that was vacated in February by Bank of the West

by Gennady Sheyner

The building on California Avenue in Palo Alto that until recently served as a branch of Bank of the West is slated to receive a major facelift, a colorful new mural and a new tenant: Silicon Valley Bank.

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Email Staff Writer Gennady Sheyner at [email protected]


Posted by anon1234
a resident of College Terrace
on Jul 12, 2022 at 11:01 am

anon1234 is a registered user.

I believe the exterior of this building should be considered an historic asset and should be maintained as is.
I don’t know the exact date the building was built but surely it is a fine example of mid century design.

Posted by ALB
a resident of College Terrace
on Jul 12, 2022 at 12:25 pm

ALB is a registered user.

Metal blocks will replace the historic architectural element on the facade of the bank to deprive California Avenue of a much appreciated and admired feature. Why does this facade have to be dropped? Please do not tell me that it
does not complement SVBank’s identity. We need to preserve midcentury architecture and honor the contribution it makes to the California Avenue Business District and Palo Alto as well.

Posted by W. Reller
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jul 12, 2022 at 12:36 pm

W. Reller is a registered user.

The building is UGLY.
Cheers to SVBank!

Posted by Bystander
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 12, 2022 at 12:49 pm

Bystander is a registered user.

Banks are in need of more security. A bank with an atm at front is a magnet for someone to come with a truck and pull it out. Metal blocks prevent vehicles from getting too close.

Airports and other venues are putting up huge barriers to prevent vehicles from driving in and causing mayhem. Some airports are making passengers walk 100 yards from drop off zones to terminals.

Some banks are closing branches. It is good to see a new branch being opened in town.

Posted by mjh
a resident of College Terrace
on Jul 12, 2022 at 2:46 pm

mjh is a registered user.

I’m sure a design could accommodate ATM security needs without removing the upper mid century facade.

The proposed new design looks to be completely out of keeping and incongruous within the context of the other Cal Ave bldgs.

Posted by Consider Your Options.
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 12, 2022 at 3:11 pm

Consider Your Options. is a registered user.

Glad to see this vacant building will get a new tenant. I don't view this building as a contributor to local architectural history. It's an example of midcentury design, but not such a great one that it warrants preservation, in my opinion. If you love it, you might take a picture to preserve it for your own viewing pleasure.

Posted by Theo Lane
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 12, 2022 at 3:29 pm

Theo Lane is a registered user.

Those familiar with the Bank of the West buildings in downtown Los Altos and Mountain View will note that they share a similar architectural design.

The California Avenue Bank of the West branch was once The First National Bank (of San Jose) during the 1950s.

Whether it's an architectural treasure is strictly in the eyes of the beholder as there are some Palo Alto residents who consider the 1920s era Birge Clark 'Spanish Retro' designs (i.e. the Ross Building, President Hotel et al) tiresome and dated eyesores.

Posted by Green Gables
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jul 12, 2022 at 5:55 pm

Green Gables is a registered user.

That bank building is so ugly. Maybe from the 50's when I was a kid.

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