cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner
Banks have been located in grocery stores for the past couple of decades. Grocery stores love it because they get more money from the space that might otherwise not be filled with merchandise. Banks love it because people are found in grocery stores and people use banks. And, a lot of people love it for the convenience; bank and shop with one stop.
Makes sense doesn't it?
It seems to make sense except when we hear about a 'bank robbery' involving one of those grocery store branches. The grocery store branch bank cannot be as secure and protected as the bank in a dedicated building. There are nearly always more innocent bystanders near the scene in an 'in store' robbery. People who rob banks are simply not dependable people; we do not know how far they are willing to go to obtain money; we do not know if they might be armed. They are, it seems to me, obviously a bit over the edge or they wouldn't be robbing a bank.
By now you probably know that the bank branch inside the Germantown Pick 'n Save store was robbed yesterday at shortly after 11:00AM. The layout of this store and the bank branch is such that there is very little room separating the bank from the grocery store aisle that passes in front of the check-out lanes. It is located very close to the center entrance, has one enclosed office and an open teller counter area. It is not uncommon to see customers queued up at free-standing tables in front of the teller counter waiting their turn. Grocery customers are often standing in line or checking out or bagging their groceries. Others are often at the Customer Service counter. There is no real physical separation involved and that could lead to innocent people finding themselves involved in a bank hold-up. Additionally, the grocery check-outs are loaded with money, too. What's to stop the robber from making a few withdrawls there while he or she is at it? That is not good.
It seems that, if a bank branch is to be permitted to occupy space in some other venue such as a grocery store or a Wal-Mart super store (which also has such a bank), the bank should be separated physically from the other open areas of the host store. There should be walls, whether solid or glass, separating the two business activities. That makes sense as much from a simple 'privacy' perspective as it does from the 'safety' perspective.
There are quite a number of bank robberies every year in Wisconsin. We seldom hear much since the bank executives and the police agencies don't want to make a lot of 'to do' over these events. This certainly is not the first such occurrence in a grocery store setting.
Is it a good idea to have bank customers and grocery customers intermingled as they are in the Pick 'n Save? I don't think so. Should there be physical separation? I think that is a good idea. How could that be accommodated in the Pick 'n Save? There could be a new bank entrance constructed in the outer hallway with walls separating the bank from the inner grocery store area. It would still permit one stop shopping and banking, but it would keep the two separate and, I believe, offer more privacy and more protection.
Am I just an Old Curmudgeon, or is there something to this with which you agree?