Much Ado About ADUs with Ron Barth

Photo-Joshua_White-jwpictures.com-9920.jpg

Oasys on Market Row features Resource Furniture’s transformative space-saving pieces and shows visitors how to achieve maximum living with a minimal footprint.

The Oasys house opens during the LA Design Festival and remains at ROW DTLA through the summer as a resource to homeowners interested in this new urban housing typology. The size of this 800 sq ft fully-functional modern dwelling belies its potential as a long-term housing solution – and it’s poised to be a major crowd pleaser at the festival and beyond. MOCA+ sat down with Ron Barth of Resource Furniture to talk about how good design and long-term thinking can provide possible solutions to housing issues. 

MOCA+: While we all know Resource as an innovative/transformational furniture brand, most people don’t know about Resource picking up the mantle of the housing crisis in the nation. What drew you and Resource to this particular issue?

Since the moment we began developing the Multi-Functional / Space Saving Furniture niche, Innovators and early adopters were drawn to us to solve their housing issues, followed shortly thereafter by more mainstream consumers and the Design Trade. Our clients were discovering that they no longer had to upsize, saving millions of dollars in real estate costs –  telling us that we were ‘saving their lives’ with respect to their day to day comfort and lifestyle.

 We began to more proactively look into how we could positively impact the housing market. We have sponsored 4 homes with Graham Hill, 19 homes in various Solar Decathlons over the years, and have provided products for the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, as well as  several other museum exhibitions, including a full scale micro unit in the Museum of the City of New York and, most recently, the National Building Museum as part of the National Making Room Exhibit.

 MOCA+: Why the National Building Museum and what impact did that exhibition have?

 We worked for several years with many partners to bring about this exhibit.  The impact was enormous.  Ever more broadly, the idea of a space having one function and one function only is becoming almost passé.  Why shouldn’t a space be useful 24/7 rather than 8 hours a day?

MOCA+: Was this impact measurable?     

Quite so! 102,000 visitors came through the exhibition. It was so successful that the Museum extended it an additional 4 months.

NBM-Making-Short-1600x800.jpg

MOCA+: Moving from one side of the country to the other, let’s talk about LA’s position as a hub for the ADU discussion in the country.  The momentum is palpable and this is why the LA Design Festival has identified “California’s Backyard Housing Boom” as the perfect focus for home tours, discussions and a 775 sqft home at ROW DTLA, not just for the festival but for 90 days after.  This “resource center” houses some of your best design solutions for ADUs. Tell us about what you hope happens from this installation.

We want people to understand the following:

We absolutely maximize the value of space.  But key to this maximization, is making the space perform each individual function as well as its single function. We make space do more than one thing. 

We have redefined form and revolutionized function. 

MOCA+: The ADU discussion has a continuum of sorts in that there are ADUs for people who want smaller spaces all the way to a homeless solution.  Resource Furniture is not what most people think as “affordable” and yet the extensibility of your furniture system and the durability of the design actually makes it a lasting investment.  Is affordability a part of your line or your future line or how do you position your brand in the ADU solution?

 There is every level and type of ADU.  We have products that are absolutely suitable for Affordable Housing and Supported Housing models. We have already been approved in various HUD and Affordable Housing programs.  Yes, we have luxury level furnishings but we also have multi-functional furniture that reaches every income bracket, especially when approached on a bulk order basis for Multi-Family dwellings.  

Photo-Joshua_White-jwpictures.com-0677.jpg

MOCA+: The Oasys Living solution by Stereobot is your partner at the LA Design Festival.  Will you be integrating your furniture systems into all of their homes as they position themselves as the most effective, efficient and affordable way to build?

We would very much like to integrate into every home they build – but every solution has its own budget and its own needs. We will integrate in every instance where the end-user can understand the value we provide. In the end, the cost of the furniture is nominal compared to the cost of the land and the structure and the value added is unprecedented and undeniable.

Learn more about Resource Furniture’s recent exhibition about ADUs at the National Building Museum here in this video.

Special thanks to the sponsors of Oasys on Market Row whose generous support has made it possible to create a fully functional Oasys ADU that will debut during the LA Design Festival and remain on-site at ROW DTLA through the end of the summer. Sponsors include Resource Furniture, Vadara Quartz, Haier, and Marvin. Interior design by Natalie Myers of Veneer Designs and her contributors Simply Framed, Pop Up Home, Faithful Roots, Denise Crew Print Shop, Max Wanger Print Shop, Morrow Soft Goods, Kesslyr Dean, SLTWTR Co, Revival Ceramics by LBE Design, and Public Goods.

Haily Zaki