CoastHills Credit Union leaders gathered at the space that will soon become its new headquarters and help anchor the Enos Ranch developers' effort to create a new gateway into the city of Santa Maria.

Next to the clatter and movement of crews and heavy construction equipment working at the soon-to-be-completed Lowe’s home improvement store at Betteravia Road and Highway 101, credit union executives and board of directors members kicked off construction with a groundbreaking event Wednesday afternoon.

“We are promising the people of Santa Maria that we are here to stay. You don’t put this kind of facility up if you don’t plan to stick around," said Hugh Rafferty, chairman of CoastHills Credit Union's volunteer board of directors. "This will be an economic kick-start for this community ... a $27 million investment. The jobs it will create will be a phenomenal thing for Santa Maria and the Orcutt area.” 

When complete, the building will be 91,000 square feet and three stories tall. 

The building will be made of glass, metal and other modern materials and will feature shades of blue and green similar to the colors in the credit union’s logo.

“It is not going to look like other buildings. It is going to be a wonderful place,” CoastHills President and CEO Jeff York said.

When complete, the building will be called the CoastHills Center.

The CoastHills Center will include a new state-of-the-art bank branch on the first floor, along with a large community room available for credit union members to use and room for support staff. The third floor will become home to other support departments, management offices and an employee lunchroom.

The second floor will give the credit union room to grow and build more community partners in the meantime. York said they plan to make the second floor available for lease until such time they need to expand their operations as the financial institution grows.

“For employee retention and attraction, this is going to be a great location,” York said.

The highly anticipated Enos Ranch development will include new shopping and eating options, including a new Costco, Chick-fil-A eatery and Buffalo Wild Wings.

“I think this is going to be more than just a financial institution. This is going to be a community center when you get into this plaza. People are going to want to come here and, fortunately, we are going to be here at the same time,” Rafferty said.

York said the building should be complete in 2019.

Logan B. Anderson covers city government in Santa Maria for Lee Central Coast Newspapers. Follow him on Twitter: @LoganBAnderson.

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