LANSING, Mich. – Lake Trust CU, the state’s fourth-largest credit union, announced plans today to move out of the downtown and build a 100,000-square-foot headquarters in the nearby suburb of Brighton.

The $1.6 billion credit union, which has its main office on S. Capitol Ave. in downtown Lansing, will build a $30 million office on roughly 17 acres near U.S. 23 and Interstate 96. The new headquarters will be home to as many as 350 employees and could be open by 2015.

Lake Trust President David Snodgrass said the hew headquarters will unite the credit union’s dispersed workforce at a central location and offer a better commute for most if its current employees. The new offices will also save a projected $7 million in annual operating expenses over the next 20 years due to energy efficiency and other measures.

The Lansing offices were acquired in 2010 after the merger of NuUnion CU with Detroit Edison CU, which created Lake Trust. It is unclear what will happen to the existing offices in downtown Lansing.

The credit union said about 150 of its 385 Michigan employees are based in Lansing. Those workers will have the option to relocate to Brighton.

Snodgrass said the credit union has yet to buy the Brighton property. Lake Trust said it plans to spend $10 million in those communities in addition to building the new headquarters.

The new facilities will have many natural features including a pond and designers are looking at building a first class campus with various amenities for employees, like walking trails and picnic areas.

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