Foray into the market seven years ago

A three-story, 24,000-square-foot office building near Ballantyne, with room for a mortgage hub and full-service bank branch, is in the works for Bank of North Carolina.

The High Point-based lender hopes to build on a piece of land near the intersection of U.S. Highway 521 and Providence Road West in south Charlotte, the Charlotte Business Journal has learned. The bank and its parent company, BNC Bancorp, are in negotiations for the property. Other details are not available.

In addition, BNC says it has identified a site off Dickerson Boulevard in Monroe where it plans to build its first full-service branch in Union County. Construction is slated to begin in 2015. Bank of North Carolina already has a loan-production office in the county.

BNC has grown rapidly in Charlotte since making its foray into the market seven years ago. Since hiring local market leader Rob Ellenburg from First Charter Corp. in 2007, the lender has built a commercial banking team and then added full-service banking here in 2011. It opened a flagship regional headquarters in SouthPark in 2012.

Ellenburg, a senior vice president, said in a recent interview that his lenders are on pace for $320 million in new loans in 2014, a 23% increase over 2013, if projections hold up.

The proposed Ballantyne-area office would house the bank's growing mortgage operations, which are currently based in leased space off Carmel Road in south Charlotte. It would also be the bank's fourth retail location in Charlotte.

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