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Modernist Austin architect left imprint on city

Thomas Shefelman, Starr Building designer, dead at 89

University of Texas at Austin

Longtime Austin architect Thomas Shefelman, who designed downtown’s Starr Building, several churches, and other significant city buildings, passed away at the age of 89 Wednesday; Michael Barnes’ obituary for the architect appeared Thursday in the Austin American-Statesman.

Along with the well-known Starr building at 121 West Sixth Street, built originally for American National Bank and renovated a few years ago for the McGarrah Jessee advertising firm, Shefelman designed numerous churches in town, including the Central Presbyterian Church at Brazos and East Eighth streets and the Westover Hills Church of Christ, the Austin Business Journal reported.

Shefelman was also involved in the renovations of a number of downtown landmarks, according to Barnes, including Norwood Tower, the Stephen F. Austin Hotel, and the Travis County courthouse.

According to Barnes, Shefelman also contributed to the city as an urban planner, serving on various commissions, and taught at the University of Texas School of Architecture.

Austin architect contributed modernist buildings to city’s landscape [AAS]

Austin architect dead at 89; leaves modernist design legacy [ABJ]