October 4, 2016 12:29 pm
Updated: October 4, 2016 10:43 pm

Celebrated B.C. architect Bing Thom dies at the age of 75

WATCH: Vancouver architect Bing Thom passed away of a brain aneurysm at the age of 75. His sudden death was a huge shock to many of his fans. Linda Aylesworth looks back on the man who gave Metro Vancouver some of its most distinctive buildings.


A B.C. architect known for some of the most iconic designs in Metro Vancouver has died.

Bing Thom died of a brain aneurysm in his native Hong Kong on Tuesday.

Thom was behind many local building designs, including Surrey City Centre Public Library, Simon Fraser University Surrey campus, Aberdeen Centre in Richmond and the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts at the University of British Columbia.

He is also known for a variety of works in China, United States, Spain and the UK.

Thom’s family immigrated to Vancouver from Hong Kong in 1950. He received his Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of British Columbia and his Master of Architecture degree from the University of California at Berkeley.

He started his own firm in 1982.

WATCH: Profile of influential Canadian architect Bing Thom

PHOTO GALLERY: Some of Thom’s architectural designs in Metro Vancouver are major landmarks in their respective municipalities 

The honours he received during his lifetime include the Order of Canada, the Governor General’s Award and the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal.

“Bing believed architecture transcends the building, to shine its light onto its whole surroundings,” Thom’s wife Bonnie said in a statement on the architect’s official website. “He was so happy his architects also pursue this adventure of ‘building beyond buildings.'”

WATCH: City planner and urbanist Brent Toderian has more on the legacy of Bing Thom 

B.C. Premier Christy Clark said in a statement Thom combined a passion for innovation and a limitless imagination.

“Those who were lucky enough to know Bing recognized his inherent graciousness and how he treated everyone he met with respect,” said Clark. “It was also that appreciation for bringing people together that can be seen in his work – buildings and spaces that reflect the communities they enrich…”

“Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and we thank them for the gift that was Bing Thom. His legacy and his positive impact on the world around him will stand the test of time.”

Thom was 75 years old.

FROM THE ARCHIVES: How the Aberdeen Centre helped transform Richmond  

© 2016 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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