East Hampton Village Bank Branch to Remain Open

A sign at the drive-through window alerted customers that the bank will remain open. Jane Bimson

The East Hampton Village branch of People's United Bank, which had been slated to close in September, will remain open, the bank announced this week.

Customer feedback was the deciding factor, Howard Bluver, the New York market president for People's United, said by phone on Friday. Mr. Bluver was the C.E.O. of Suffolk County National Bank, which was acquired by People's earlier this year. After the deal closed, People's announced plans to close 13 former Suffolk County National Bank branches on Long Island, including the one in the village.

There is another People's branch on Pantigo Road, outside the village, and the bank did not initially see the need for two branches just two miles apart. Employees from the village branch were slated to transfer to the Pantigo branch, Mr. Bluver said.

It may have appeared a seamless plan on paper, but "customers told us it was really an inconvenience for them to go to Pantigo," Mr. Bluver said. "We listened to them." Small businesses in the village like to be able to bank within walking distance, he said, acknowledging that the two-mile drive can take a surprisingly long time in busy summer traffic.

The owner of the Newtown Lane building, Ben Krupinski, is also "one of our best customers," Mr. Bluver said, and was pleased to have the bank stay on.

On the South Fork, in addition to the two East Hampton branches, People's United also has branches in Montauk, Sag Harbor, and Southampton and inside Stop & Shop grocery stores.