Remembering Vancouver Architect Bing Thom
Vancouver loses prominent architect Bing Thom at age 75.
Vancouver architect Bing Thom died from a brain aneurysm in Hong Kong today at age 75. The industry leader headed Bing Thom Architects and worked on iconic projects locally and abroad. In the Lower Mainland this included the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts at UBC, the Sunset Community Centre and the Surrey City Library. He’s also been a great supporter for Western Living‘s Designers of the Year awards, generously donating his time to judge our architecture category on many occasions.
Governor-General’s Award-winning writer, Michael Harris, profiled Thom back in 2008 for Vancouver magazine, where he noted the thoughtfulness of Thom’s designs in relation to the environment surrounding them.
“His own projects have a rare consideration for issues external to the building itself. On Harwood Street, a glass apartment tower has been designed around a 120-foot tulip tree. In Richmond, his Aberdeen Mall has become a fulcrum of Asian culture in a city where malls are more often considered dead spaces. In Whistler, his Celebration Plaza (where medals are to be awarded during the Olympics) will be transformed after the Games into a public skating rink. In Fort Worth, Texas, a triad of ribbon-like bridges (inspired by wind and water) presents an elegant solution to the problem of a river-centric community. Then there’s Dalian New Town, in China, where Thom designed an entire city adjacent to Dalian proper, turning a worn seaport into a home for more than a million people-this largest of macro visions is scheduled for completion around 2025.” —Michael Harris
His wife Bonnie posted the following message on the Bing Thom Architects website this morning:
Bing believed architecture transcends the building, to shine its light onto its whole surroundings. He was so happy his architects also pursue this adventure of ‘building beyond buildings’. —Bonnie Thom