Mortar washed red brick home in Colonia Solana was designed by architect Arthur Brown

Architect Spotlight: Arthur T. Brown

Last Updated on February 3, 2023 by Kim Labriola

About Arthur T. Brown

Arthur Brown was an influential Architect who moved to Tucson area in 1936 and lived here for several decades. He designed many modern houses, as well as churches and schools, while remaining sensitive to the desert environment.

Brown designed the first passive solar school in the country  (Rose School, demolished) in 1948. He experimented with passive solar construction in homes also.  Brown constructed a dark colored masonry wall inside the home with south-facing windows that would allow sunlight to hit the wall in the winter. During the day, the masonry wall would absorb heat, at night the heat would radiate into the home. During the summer the sun was overhead & sunlight wouldn’t reach the interior.  He was 60 years ahead of his time!

Arthur Brown Ball-Paylor house with revolving shade structure
Arthur Brown designed Ball-Paylor house with revolving shade structure

One of his more well-known buildings is the Faith Lutheran Church at 3925 E. 5th Steet, built in 1951. The church had a small budget of $50,000 for construction. Interestingly enough, the church’s committee originally wanted a Spanish style building. Brown recommended some other area architects that worked in that style, but in the end they chose Brown’s uniquely modern church.

Rustic Western style Art Brown designed home
Rustic Western-s style Art Brown designed home in midtown with James Savage sculptures at front wall entrance.

This post is part of a series of articles about homes that were designed by influential Tucson architects. See the ‘Architect Spotlight’ category to see more of this series.

Arthur Brown blueprints

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Arthur Brown designed home in Tucson
Arthur Brown designed home in Tucson

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