Curran House

4009 Curran Ln W, University Place, WA

Mid-century modern design house


Curran House

View from West

Photo taken by K. A. Erickson in November 2010




The Curran House belonged to Mary and Charles Curran who purchased, then considered rural, property in the early 1950's and turned it into an apple orchard. Their house of residence was designed in 1952 by a Tacoma architect, Robert B. Price, who later would be inducted to the AIA College of Fellows.

In the 1990's the Curran family sold a portion of their property to developers who quickly put in a small subdivision. For a while it seemed the rest of the orchard and house would meet the same fate. However county leaders stepped in with funding to preserve the orchard as a working park, "an edible classroom." The house on the other hand has been in limbo as the since incorporated University Place city has debated on whether or not to keep the house for public use as a future history museum or to demolish. Ironically one council member who favours tearing it down lives in the small subdivision that was once Curran property. It appears having it stay ruins their property values.

Funding and partnerships seem to be forthcoming though, to repair and renovate the roof as well as the interior. Having some link to the past will be a benefit to University Place as due to its relatively wealthy inhabitants there is an inclination to tear down anything that is over 20 years old.

The Washington Trust for Historic Preservation placed the Curran House on its 2009 list of Most Endangered Properties.

Update Log 

  • November 7, 2010: Added by K. A. Erickson



Curran House
Posted April 10, 2012, by K. A. Erickson

The Curran House was successfully added to the NRHP on March 7, 2012. The University Place Historical Society plans to unveil the plaque at a Homes and Gardens Tour on June 10. The Curran House will be one of the homes available to visit from 1 to 5pm.