The Oak Park Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) moved full steam ahead Oct. 29, making determinations on several matters, including giving Hinsdale Bank & Trust its approval to open a new branch in Scoville Square, 151 N. Oak Park Ave. The location is that of the former Winberie’s restaurant, which closed last December, breaking the collective heart of the Oak Park community.
“We understand that the corner we’re looking to occupy is one of the most prominent corners in the village,” said Hinsdale Bank CEO Dennis Jones. “We understand the responsibility that comes with that and we’ll honor that responsibility.”
Hinsdale Bank is one of 15 distinct community bank charters under the Wintrust Bank umbrella. Hinsdale Bank, wholly owned by Wintrust, has multiple branches already, including one in Western Springs, Riverside and Maywood. The Oak Park branch will be full-service with no drive-thru capability.
“Wintrust has the stated mission of becoming Chicago’s bank. Our absence in Oak Park is conspicuous. We need to be in Oak Park in order to truly become Chicago’s bank,” said Dennis Jones.
Hinsdale Bank’s commitment to hyperlocal banking and becoming part of the community garnered its application the support of ZBA member Don DeBruin.
“Hinsdale Bank has an amazing reputation and the discussion about being a local, local bank resonates with me,” said DeBruin. “That carries a lot of weight with me.”
ZBA member David Brumirski was less enthused about the prospect of putting a bank branch in Scoville Square, calling it “a step down.”
“We’d all rather have something else here,” said Brumirski. “It’s not all that exciting.”
Zoning board members were ultimately in favor of the application, voting 5-0 to recommend the village board approve it.
The ZBA also voted to recommend the approval of the three other applications, including one submitted by Oak Park Bodyworx, 6209 North Ave., to construct and operate a drive thru for its juice bar. The two others included a request for a special use permit to open a daycare center at 266 Lake St. and a request for a permit to open an educational facility at 238-240 Madison St. by Glitter Nail Academy.