Based on a belief in "an excellent opportunity for a new, locally owned bank," a group of Arlington investors has organized and incorporated Arlington investors has organized and incorporated Arlington Bank, which they hope to open before the end of the year.

The new financial institution, geared primarily toward merchants and small-business people, is being capitalized by the sale of 200,000 shares of stock at a subscription price of $10 apiece. Bank President Roy M. Paterson said, "Sales now are pretty strong. With formal applications already filed, it is very reasonable to expect we'll have formal approval by late August or early September."

The initial offering began last July, and Paterson said interest has picked up considerably in the last two months. "We've sold about $1.25 million worth of the shares," he said.

A site for the bank, at North Stuart Street and Wilson Boulevard in Ballston, already has been selected. The bank was incorporated under Virginia laws and will be a state-chartered bank as well as a member of the Federal Reserve system. If approved, the bank would be the first new commercial bank to begin operations in northern Virginia in three years.