Tampa, Florida -- Today, Dec. 19, USAmeriBank installed an 11-foot-tall sign that's a re-creation of the historic 'Lady Columbia' sign of the 1940's and 50's at its Ybor branch.
The original 'Lady Columbia' sign was installed more than 60 years ago and is owned by the Grimaldi family, who also owned Columbia Bank that opened in 1936 on E. 7th Avenue. In line with the restoration of the building under its new name USAmeriBank, the new sign honors the past and fits with other historical signs in Ybor by incorporating retro neon lights.
Photo Gallery: USAmeriBank installs "Lady Columbia" sign
"Columbia Bank was an important Ybor institution, and this sign further represents USAmeriBank's mission to preserve the history of the building, with a look to the future," Shari Middleton, senior vice president/branch manager, said in a release.
The sign design was reportedly a collaboration of StudioMax Design, a Tampa-based branding, design and advertising company; and Thomas Sign & Awning Company, a Clearwater-based manufacturer of corporate signage, who constructed the sign.
"We went to great lengths to create a sign that honored the original and was appropriate for the present culture of the Ybor community," said Joe Chillura, CEO of USAmeriBank.
USAmeriBank renovated the vacant 11,800-square-foot Columbia Bank building and officially opened in March of this year. The renovation highlighted the building's architectural features, while also emphasizing Ybor's importance to area commerce.