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Digital FCU, the largest credit union in New England, is getting kicked out of Hewlett-Packard Corp. offices to provide room for HP's main credit union, Addison Avenue FCU.

The move means that Digital FCU, whose corporate sponsor Digital Equipment Corp. is now an HP subsidiary, will shut down five branches in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Georgia and Colorado ,and also pull out all of its ATMs.

"Basically, what has happened is Hewlett-Packard has notified us we're supposed to vacate our branches by March 31, next year, and they've decided to focus on Addison Avenue as their favored credit union," said Tim Garner, VP-marketing at DCU.

Digital Equipment Corp., the original sponsor of the Digital FCU, was acquired by Compaq Computer in 1998, and Compaq was taken over by H-P last year. The credit union has not projected the cost of replacing the lease-free branches. "They gave us space and we gave their employees service. That's the way e operated for years," said Garner.

The $2.4 billion credit union is currently searching for new sites to replace the HP branches. "We're working with a search firm to find new locations," said Garner, who noted the drawbacks of on-site branches, including restricted office hours and limited parking.

A merger with the Palo Alto, Calif.-based Addison Avenue FCU is not practical, he said, because DCU serves more than 500 select groups and has only 3% of its members tied to the HP connection.

At least two other CUs located in HP facilities, Houston FCU and Technology CU, have also received eviction notices from the computer manufacturer. Officials of H-P could not be reached for comment.

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