Zions Bank said Monday it will close 21 of its branches in Smith's Food & Drug stores and open 10 new full-service branch offices, mostly along the Wasatch Front, during the next few months.

The Salt Lake-based company said U.S. Bank will assume the lease agreements at the Smith's stores, with Zions Smith's branches consolidating into new or existing branch offices. All loans and deposits will remain with Zions Bank and will be transferred to a designated nearby branch. All in-store branch employees will be relocated to nearby branches.

Zions Smith's branches will close beginning in January. After that, Zions will operate eight in-store branches, including inside Smith's stores in Price and Twin Falls, Idaho.

The new branch offices will open between November and February in Riverton, Providence, Saratoga Springs, Rose Park, East Sandy, West Jordan/Copper Hills, Farmington, Layton, North Ogden and South Jordan/Daybreak.

Zions also has acquired land for future branches in Springville, Ephraim and Eden, as well as for replacement of the bank's Bountiful and Tooele offices. Land also has been acquired for a branch in Driggs, Idaho.

"At Zions Bank, we pride ourselves on making nimble business decisions, so we are continually evaluating our branch locations to ensure we are keeping up with changes in population centers and taking advantage of opportunities in areas experiencing population growth," LeeAnne Linderman, Zions Bank executive vice president and director of branch banking, said in a prepared statement.

"Our branch strategy is focused on providing full-service branches with the convenience of drive-up banking, as well as a broad range of local banking services. These changes in the footprint of our branch network allow us to continue serving our existing clients while introducing ourselves as the new neighbors to businesses and families in 10 new locations."

Zions has opened four new full-service branches in Utah during the past year — in Sandy (Union Heights), Kamas, South Ogden and Roy — plus one full-service Idaho branch in Meridian. It also completed remodels in Kearns, Roosevelt, Washington, Castle Dale and Huntington.

Zions also has announced plans for a new Zions Bank Financial Center in Provo, which will serve as the headquarters for the bank's Central Utah region. In addition, a private banking branch will be opened later this year at the new Intermountain Medical Center in Murray.

Zions operates 114 full-service locations throughout Utah and 24 in Idaho, and it has nearly 200 ATMs in the two states.


E-mail: bwallace@desnews.com