Campus Life

Dr. Arthur Erickson (1924-2009)

Renowned Canadian architect Arthur Erickson (LLD '81) died on May 20, 2009, at age 84. University Hall, the University of Lethbridge's main building, is one piece in a legacy of architectural masterpieces that he leaves behind.

Erickson was also responsible for a number of key Canadian buildings such as Simon Fraser University in British Columbia and the Vancouver Law Courts complex as well as many other significant structures worldwide, including the Canadian Embassy in Washington, One California Plaza in Los Angeles and the Kuwait Oil Sector Complex in Kuwait City.

Erickson was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1973 and then was promoted to Companion of the Order in 1981. In 1986, he was the first Canadian to win the prestigious American Institute of Architects Gold Medal.

Erickson and his business partner, Geoffrey Massey, designed University Hall and the University's campus plan in the late 1960s. Their design, which was considered quite radical at the time, set the U of L apart in architecture and academic circles alike and brought the southern Alberta landmark international recognition.

"Arthur's whole way of thinking was that there were no limits as to what could be done," recalls his long-time friend Dr. Van Christou (LLD '84), who was a founding member of the U of L Board of Governors and the person responsible for connecting Erickson with the University in the '60s.

"Arthur was a brilliant man and an amazing architect."

Erickson's work has left a lasting imprint on the University of Lethbridge and southern Alberta that will live on well into the future.