Best Recycling Effort (2004)
Patricia Hair Woods's cottage A few years ago, attorney Patricia Hair Woods learned that the law firm where she worked, Womble, Cotellesse & Howell, planned to demolish a neighboring Victorian cottage built in the 1890s near the Historic Sixth Ward and replace it with a parking lot. She offered to save the cottage, and embarked on a house-moving project worthy of the Wizard of Oz. "It was the widest house you can move without cutting it up," she says. Employing a tractor trailer in place of a tornado, workers set off on a 90-mile journey across back roads and rural highways. One man rode on the roof and lifted up power lines with a pole so the house could squeeze underneath. When they arrived 18 hours later at Woods's weekend retreat in Anahuac, they gently laid the house on its new plot among 150-year-old oaks and pecan trees. Woods repainted the walls, refinished the floors and preserved the original doors and moldings. Although Houston regrettably lost another historic home, the Texas countryside gained a jewel that could last another century.