TULSA, Okla. (2/25/09)--Three Tulsa, Okla.-based credit unions have recently opened new branches, which were planned a year-and-a-half to two years ago, but now expansion should slow as the economy has slowed down, according to a local newspaper. The $740 million asset Tulsa Teachers CU opened its 11th branch last month; the $423 million asset Tulsa Federal Employees CU opened a branch last month and expects to start construction on another later this year; and the $89.3 million asset Western Sun FCU plans a fourth location and hopes to absorb another credit union and turn it into a branch in April (The Journal Record Feb. 24). The credit unions’ efforts--during a time when many businesses have cut back or closed--represent positive growth steps and statements of continued faith in their business plans, the newspaper said. Tulsa Teachers CU’s new 3,000-square-foot Claremont, Okla., branch is in a rented space costing $367,000. The credit union has changed the way it intends to continue to grow branches, Kristi Brook Cohea, vice president of marketing and member relations, told the paper. Tulsa Teachers aims to run “very mean and lean,” operating with as small of a staff as possible. It will determine whether it would be better to occupy vacant buildings in the area instead of building new spaces, she added.