Houston architect Staub displayed considerable virtuosity in transforming an asymmetrical, side-passage-plan, late-nineteenth-century town house into a symmetrical Georgian country house for ranching heiress Mary Traylor Vandenberge. Staub recast the Craig Street side elevation of the house as the new front elevation. He cut a central hall across the short dimension of the house but partially reused the existing stair. The old front hall became a library and the parlors a spacious living room. A new dining room added to the house's east side took form as a central two-story bay flanked by two-story Tuscan columned porticoes. The Tuscan columned porte-cochere was meant to be so imposing that it would obscure awareness of an existing chimney stack to the right and the high-raised trio of kitchen and powder room windows to the left. Staub pulled this trans formation off with such panache that this still seems like the most stylish country house in Victoria.
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Mary Traylor Vandenberge House
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