SCADpad micro-house is a solution for TODAY

July
7
2014

Savannah College of Art and Design's futuristic micro-house experiment, SCADpad, is on the minds of media giants lately. TIME Magazine covered SCADpad in its "Smart Home" feature and NBC flew TODAY Show correspondent Jenna Wolfe to Atlanta for her own personal tour. In case the summer finds you behind on either, catch up by reading and watching now.

 

Next post
Best of Animation 2014
Previous post
A career in … amusement: It's not just about the rides

A taste of tiny living in SCADpad

May
7
2014

I volunteered to live in Savannah College of Art and Design's experimental micro-house SCADpad because I wanted to test whether a 135 square-foot dwelling is truly liveable. I figured cooking was going to be my biggest challenge when I moved into SCADpad Europe this week: even when you have full-sized equipment (i.e. stove, oven), cooking in a small space is difficult. Where do you prep? Chop? Plate? Clean up? My mother is a fantastic cook. As a child, I was attached to her hip, which meant a lot of time with her in the kitchen. I learned to cook from her, absorbed it rather, over years of watching, mimicking and helping her prepare meal after meal.

But in a kitchen with only a sink, microwave, and a one-burner stovetop? Now that’s a challenge, especially if you’re going for something slightly healthier than mac ‘n cheese from a cardboard box.

My SCADpad kitchen is a single plane of countertop, 7 Women’s Size 7 Keds long by 2 Women’s Size 7 Keds deep. Half is taken up by the sink and single-burner stovetop. A large cutting board can squeeze in on the other half, next to the Keurig coffee maker and in front of the kitchen utensils. In other words, there’s not a lot of space. So how do you cook?

Three words: Keep. It. Simple.

I’m talking one pot simple: stir-fries, one pot pasta, lots of sautéing and steaming. For my first meal, I made stir-fry with lots of vegetables, some leftover roasted chicken I brought to SCADpad from home, and steamed rice. I call it SCADpad Stirfry.

While the space is tight, I can say that the SCADpad kitchen was designed for the user. Of course, everything is in reach. How could it not be? But in such a tight squeeze, burning yourself could be an issue. The SCADpad designers factored that in. The burner is “magnetic induction,” meaning the flat plane will only heat magnetized pots and pans. The “burner” will not burn you if you happen to graze your hand over it. You could place a stick of butter on the “hot burner” but it would not melt. The burner will only heat magnetized metal. All of the pots and pans in SCADpad have been specially made with magnetic coating to respond to the burner.

But if for some reason the cooking doesn’t work out, there is always the SCADpad iPad: use it to order delivery. Just be sure to give detailed directions to the parking deck.

Glennis Lofland is a writer, reader and occasional runner pursuing her M.F.A. in writing at SCAD Atlanta. A native Virginian from a country town called Crozier, she traveled across the globe before coming to Atlanta. She holds a bachelor’s degree in English with a minor in linguistics from the College of William and Mary. Follow her on Twitter @GlennisLofland.

Next post
Updated: Emerging filmmakers 'see' their dreams come true
Previous post
A career in … amusement: It's not just about the rides

What's in your bag for SCADpad?

April
16
2014

The first SCADpad residents are settling in to their micro-houses in the parking deck of Savannah College of Art and Design in Atlanta. Even before crossing the threshold, they ran smack into one of the first dilemmas that micro-living poses: how to pack? Here’s what they brought with them.

Lynda Spratley
Hometown: Kennesaw, Georgia
Major: Graphic Design, Senior

What did you pack?
I tried to pack as few outfits as possible so that my clothes would fit in the space. I packed my pancake mix because I love breakfast food, anytime. Popcorn is my favorite snack so I had to bring my kernels along. My laptop is coming along because no graphic designer can leave home without it.

What perspective do you bring to micro-living?
I'm not sure my major of graphic design will affect my perspective as much as my background. I have always lived in large spaces. So I have the mentality that there is room for everything. I think SCADpad will be more about having room for what I need.

What habits do you bring that you think you’ll have to ditch?
I think my habit of wanting a lot of clothes to choose from will have to change. I usually dress based on how I feel on a given day. This time I had to pack a small suitcase.

Sharika Menon
Hometown: Kerala, India
Major: Interior Design, Graduate Student

What did you pack?
Everything that fits into ONE bag! It was quite the challenge to pack for 10 anything-can-happen days. Optimism was the one thing that kept me company as I added each item to the pile. Now that I’ve checked into SCADpad, I will see for myself whether SCADpad's design will accommodate anything (relatively small and light), beautifully.

Carlos Maldonado
Hometown: Asheville, North Carolina
Major: Photography, Junior

What did photographer Carlos bring with him? Bet you can guess. Check your answer here.
 

Next post
Snapshots of SCAD alumni in the South
Previous post
A career in … amusement: It's not just about the rides

Watch: SCADpad micro-house unveiled

April
10
2014

In a conventional Atlanta parking deck, Savannah College of Art and Design has launched an unconventional solution to explosive urban population growth and the accompanying demand for flexible housing. If you missed the live unveiling of SCADpad here on Thread, watch it now and take a virtual tour below.

SCAD’s experimental and experiential contribution to the micro-house movement, SCADpad pushes the boundaries of urban living and the parking deck that hosts three models of the 135 square-foot semi-permanent dwelling, SCADpad Asia, SCADpad Europe and SCADpad North America.

The SCADpad project also pushed emerging artists and designers, representing 12 academic programs, to the limits of innovation in areas like adaptive reuse, sustainable living, furniture design, intelligent home systems and more.

So, is it liveable? We’ll answer that question when the first round of SCADpad’s student-residents moves in next week. Follow their experiences on Twitter using #SCADpad.

Next post
Snapshots of SCAD alumni in the South
Previous post
A career in … amusement: It's not just about the rides

Making room in a micro-house

March
20
2014

Suffice it to say that counter and storage space will be scant in Savannah College of Art and Design’s SCADpad micro-house, measuring 8 feet wide by 16 feet long. So where will the inhabitants put all their, well, stuff? This is the challenge that industrial design students working on SCADpad received.

School of Design dean Victor Ermoli gives feedback on students' early concepts.

The metalic rail above the sink in SCADpad's kitchen is the backbone for wall panels that will provide storage and organization.

The SCADpad brief for industrial design required the team to create a modular wall system to organize residents’ what nots. On top of that challenge was the call for something sustainable and customizable, according to the residents’ unique lifestyles. Oh, and one more thing: the wall system had to be a host for art, not an eyesore of metal and plywood that you’d find in an average garage.

Early sketches of the modular wall system.

SCADpad isn’t just about living small, it’s about living artfully in a dramatically reduced footprint; about minimizing accessories in order to maximize art. Here are some of those accessories – including utensil holders, soap dishes, hangers and towel rods that can be housed in the wall system - and a sliver of the art that the students’ designs make room for.

A sampling of the components and accessories that the wall systems in SCADpad will house. All will be made with 3D printing technology to eliminate the need for shipping and packaging.


Decorative shelves in walnut and acrylic add artful elements to the SCADpad modular wall system.

Woodworkers made walnut shelves and storage boxes directly from student drawings. Later, nature-inspired textures were applied by a 5 axis CNC router. So in addition to learning about time and client management, the students mastered the process of readying their designs for both collaboration with technology and craftspeople.

The 5 axis CNC router is available for student projects at SCAD.

Other experts that the industrial design students collaborated with were their peers in fibers, whose patterned felt wall panels and storage boxes soften and beautify their functional wall system and components. Similarly, the team consulted with students from furniture design for their technical expertise. The results are a far cry from the tree houses, FEMA trailers and huts the students have experienced during their travels; experiences they referenced along the way to inspire designs for SCADpad.

Next, the industrial design team will tackle the touch points residents will use to control SCADpad's home systems, like heating and air. Service design students are heading up that aspect of the micro-house prototypes.

Next post
6 mobile game apps to install now
Previous post
A career in … amusement: It's not just about the rides

Designing furniture for a micro-house on a micro-timeline

March
12
2014

Though their names have yet to be announced, the students who will have the good fortune to live in the micro-housing prototypes being constructed at Savannah College of Art and Design weigh heavily on the minds of the designers and builders who are quickly making SCADpad a reality.

Plans for the SCADpad prototypes.

Teams are constructing the SCADpad units in Savannah for transport to Atlanta.

SCADpad's kitchen taking shape.

It was late January when I visited one of the first SCADpad reviews, where students from industrial design, interactive design, design for sustainability and furniture design presented their initial ideas for tricking out the three SCADpad prototypes. Fast forward six weeks, when I caught up with the furniture design students again, and I was floored by their progress. At the beginning of winter quarter, the group was just beginning to grapple with how to design furniture for the extended living areas that will surround the SCADpad micro-community: a shared gaming area, rapid prototyping area and lounge area.

Furniture design students present early concepts for modular pieces with the goal of maximizing adaptability.

A panel of faculty provide their feedback on the students' initial ideas and pose challenging questions.

One of the biggest questions they faced was how to simplify the furniture enough to make it adaptable for SCADpad residents. Senior Rachel Biancofiore (B.F.A., furniture) gave Thread a peek at how they tackled it:

Also during their initial review, school of design dean Victor Ermoli challenged the students to incorporate illumination into their designs. Here’s senior Ben Engel (B.FA., furniture) on what they came up with for lighting and workspace solutions. Keep your seats, "Star Wars" fans.

 

 

 

On top of the puzzles one would expect to encounter while exploring new frontiers of design, the furniture design students are operating according to an expedited schedule to allow time for Kentucky-based outdoor furniture company Brown Jordan to manufacture their collection and deliver it to Atlanta for an April move-in. Typically, the students have as long as ten weeks to move through ideation and revisions in order to deliver production drawings. For SCADpad they did all of this in six. Those six weeks also included time they spent consulting with the other student teams on their own challenges, like helping industrial design develop planters for the SCADpad units.

We’ll have more on the solutions those students created soon.

Next post
The art of sound
Previous post
A career in … amusement: It's not just about the rides