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Washing-Stone mutual

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It seems a prehistoric couple has taken up residence atop a commuter train station in Chicago.

A 3-D faux-rock dwelling worthy of the Flintstones is home to two Stone Age characters in loincloths. The 24-by-25-foot cave was conceived by Seattle agency Sedgwick Rd. to tout Washington Mutual's home loans.

The structure took San Francisco set-design company Wrecking Ball eight weeks to build. Etched in the rock are the words, "We've been getting people into their dream homes for years." A sign at the entrance bears the Washington Mutual Home Loans logo and the tagline, "The power of yes."

Steve Johnston, creative director at Sedgwick Rd., says the shop isn't suggesting that Washington Mutual actually helped Neanderthals negotiate their cave loans. Rather, he says, the piece is ment to remind people that WaMu has "been around for a while." Since 1889, to be exact.

"They are the No. 1 home lender in the country, and they have a lot of experience doing that," Johnston said. "Part of the thing really is to say that we can accommodate you and get you the kind of loan you need, no matter what sort of house it is."

WaMu's Chicago cam paign follows various urban marketing efforts on the East Coast.