City First Bank opened in Washington two years ago with a mission to help rebuild the city’s most run-down neighborhoods, so it made perfect sense to Tom Nida, a senior vice president at $28 million-asset City First, to target charter schools — alternative learning institutions that are often the centerpieces of urban revitalization efforts.

The bank has made loans to four such schools in the past year and has a “comparable number” in the pipeline, Mr. Nida said. Its goal is to become the lender of choice for charter schools in and around the District of Columbia.

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