The Equitable Co-Operative Building Association is a monumental, one-story bank building in the Classical Revival style located on F Street NW in the Downtown Historic District. Designed by both Arthur B. Heaton and Frederic B. Pyle and built in 1911-1912, it is a prototypical example of a “temple front” bank building, with a marble portico, four Ionic columns, and a granite base. The company's name, "EQVITABLE," is carved into the entablature's frieze. Just past the portico is a brick facade, with a bronze doorway and marble base. The interior banking room, which is historically-designated, includes a vaulted skylight and Classical Revival interior details.
The architectural features and materials, including granite, marble, and bronze, come together to symbolize economic and financial strength — arguably, the most important aspect of any financial institution. This is one of six bank buildings that Heaton designed, including Chevy Chase Savings Bank, as well as banks that he redesigned, such as Washington Loan & Trust Company across the street (which he also expanded).
Although the building was constructed in the early 20th century, the Equitable Co-Operative Building Association dates to 1879. Cofounded by John Joy Edson (1846 - 1935), the "thrift bank" was a major player in Washington's financial sector during the late-19th and early-20th century. Edson served as the president of Equitable Co-Operative, and also founded the Washington Loan & Trust Company and Columbia National Bank. "Thrifts" (i.e., savings and loan associations), like Equitable Co-Operative, provided a pathway to housing for its members, who were otherwise shut out from obtaining a mortgage (and one with a low rate) from the banks of the time.
More recently, the space has been restored and repurposed into a Southern restaurant, Succotash Prime, which opened in 2017.
DC Inventory: July 28, 1994
National Register: December 29, 1994
Within Downtown Historic District