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Bank of Italy building located at 12 South First Street at East Santa Clara Street in downtown San Jose, California. The Bank of Italy Building (also known as the Bank of America Building), is 15-stories and was built in 1926. Built by architect H. A. Minton to be one of the Bay Area's first "earthquake-proof" constructions and the tallest building in San Jose for 61 years. Bank of Italy, later to become the Bank of America, was founded by San Jose native A.P. Giannini.