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Citizens Savings & Loan Association
700 Berkshire Boulevard
East Alton, IL - Metro East
Architect: Alvin K. Stolze for Keeney & Stolze, 19641

A round bank building, set into the cut-out of a hillside, with a vertical slab accented by stylized stainless steel lettering, wrapped in glass block and accessed from the street corner by its own private suspension bridge. That description alone would make this Mid-Century bank a standout. But for Citizens Savings and Loan (later the Citizens Professional Building), this is only the beginning. The building is loaded up, inside and out, with spectacular 1960s detailing.

The facade is divided into vertical segments. Most are infilled with glass block, mostly colorless translucent, flecked with red and yellow colored blocks (unfortunately painted black some time after 20002.)

If you had the good fortune to be arriving from the corner of Berkshire and Wood River during the bank's heyday, you would cross the suspension bridge, passing over (according to the original plans) 6,000 square feet of reflecting pools with fountains.

You would open a pair of doors adorned with 60s fab angled door handles, and arrive in this completely psychadelic vestibule. Tinted translucent plastic is punctuated by metal rings, skewed from the orthogonal and filled with colored tint.

You might also have arrived from the rear parking lot, in which case your journey took you up this fantastic stairwell. Adjacent screen walls are tricked out with the same set of metal rings embedded in translucent plastic, a motif picked up by the vertical stainless steel rods that screen off the stairs - here, the rings are impaled on the rods. Notice that the inside of the rings are colored in red and yellow.

The stair steps rest on a single angled metal tube, painted black for a low-key effect.

A second stairwell is entered from the ground level on the west side. Like the one downstairs, it features yellow vertical rods (not sure if they're structural or not) that serve in place of conventional railings on one side. The walls feature the same pebble tile used on the outside of the building.

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