Bank of America said Monday it will close 35 San Diego County branches, or nearly one-third of its 108 local offices by the first week in November.
The branch closings are meant to reduce the "overlapping" of offices that has existed since Bank of America acquired Security Pacific Bank in April, Bank of America spokesman Adrian Rodriguez said. Thirty of the 35 branches to be shuttered are former Security Pacific branches, he said.
There will be no immediate layoffs of branch employees as a result of the branch consolidations. Personnel at branches being closed will be transferred to other offices, Rodriguez said.
But layoffs of a portion of Bank of America's San Diego County payroll are probable at some future date as the merged bank digests the merger and consolidates, Rodriguez said. The bank declined to quantify the bank's total employees in San Diego County.
"These are just real estate decisions," Rodriguez said. "Employees will transfer over to existing branches. There have been no reductions of staff. We will certainly have to have reductions at some point, but with our hiring freeze in place for over a year, we hope to keep that to a minimum."
Among the Security Pacific branches to be closed is the former main downtown office at 1200 3rd Avenue, which will be consolidated into Bank of America's main downtown branch on 450 B Street. Also to be closed are Security Pacific branches in Clairemont Mesa, Hillcrest, Kearny Mesa, La Jolla, Mission Valley, Pacific Beach and Point Loma.
Bank of America branches slated for closure are in Fallbrook, Ramona, San Marcos, Rancho Penasquitos and Imperial Beach. The determining factors in closing the branches were location, size and availability of parking, Rodriguez said.
The April merger created a Bank of America with 1,483 branches in California and 91,000 employees systemwide.
The bank has yet to disclose officially how many branches and jobs overall would be eliminated after the two systems are fully consolidated, but bank sources have said that from 10,000 to 12,000 jobs will eventually be cut through attrition and layoffs.
In addition to San Diego County, Bank of America has also announced branch closings in San Francisco and Sacramento counties, in the west side of San Fernando Valley and in Ventura County "but nowhere else yet," Rodriguez said.