Experience Lab (pr. n.)
[ex • peer • ee • ins • lab]:
An interactive and educational exhibit hall showcasing the future of housing, featuring curated demonstrations of new technologies and ideas.
A lot of us are used to the typical conference experience of walking around an exhibit hall; grabbing some swag, chatting with a company representative, and moving on. But at HousingX, our exhibit hall is a bit different. Instead of just grabbing a koozie and moving on, our Experience Lab exhibitors want you to stick around for a bit.
Each of our Experience Lab exhibitors has crafted a unique and engaging learning experience for our attendees. Walk around the venue to see a demo of TestFit, go outside to take a look at the HomeShed, or sit down with the founder of IndieDwell to learn about how modular construction could work for your project.
Our exhibitors will have set times where they will give a structured presentation or demo on a repeating basis—think of it like a self-guided walking tour. But in between those presentations, attendees can feel free to walk up and have a chat to learn more about our exhibitors.
Wednesday, May 25th
8am – 9am
Breakfast – Open Lab
11:45am – 12pm
12:15pm – 1:15pm
Lunch – Open Lab
2:15pm – 2:30pm
2:45pm – 3pm
Work Program Architects
VT Virginia Center for Housing Research × project:HOMES
HomeShed × Habitat for Humanity Peninsula/Greater Williamsburg
3:05pm – 3:20pm
TestFit × RBA Architects
Experience Lab Map
Our mission at Blueprint Robotics is to deliver a technologically advanced off-site building system to the US construction market. Blueprint is dedicated to transforming the wood framed construction industry with A Better Way to Build.
Focused on multi-unit residential projects, Blueprint’s method emphasizes risk reduction, improved cost control, superior quality, precision and coordination, environmentally conscious execution, and significantly faster speed of construction for the benefit of our customers.
Visit the Blueprint Robotics exhibit to understand how we build with unmatched quality, precision, cost certainty and speed. We leverage BIM and robotics to manufacture wood framed multi-unit residential projects in our Baltimore facility. Examine mock-up panels and speak with the experts on Blueprint Robotics’ building methods. Also, be sure to attend our deep dive sessions with Bill Grothmann, Director of Sales, who will walk you through Blueprint Robotics’ scope of work and the building process from start to finish.
Booth #4 – Grand Ballroom
Wednesday Presentation Times: 10:45am; 2:15pm
Buy Local, Buy Healthy
Buy Local, Buy Healthy is an approach to purchasing building products that focuses on supporting jobs in the local or regional economy and lessening exposure to hazardous substances in the home. It develops a better understanding of a product’s ingredient content and how they might impact the health of residents and installers.
Buying locally made building products that are healthier for residents and installers is easy with the help of BuildingClean.org. This free resource contains more than 4,600 manufacturing facilities across the United States producing a wide range of building products in ten different market sectors. It also has a searchable database of products with third-party certifications and ingredient disclosures, allowing you to identify products with low VOC certifications and products that are free of the most hazardous chemicals.
Come visit Building Clean at the Experience Lab to learn more about the importance of buying local and buying healthy, and how to implement those strategies in your affordable housing projects.
Booth #9 – Grand Foyer
Wednesday Presentation Times: 11:45am; 2:15pm
Hampton University School of Engineering and Technology
In an age where housing prices continue to rise at an unprecedented pace, cohousing presents an alternative way to conceptualize what it means to live economically. To solve the problem of housing being out of reach for many Americans, one might look to material costs as a solution. As an alternative, this project expands to include a more holistic assessment of costs of living. Through the cohousing model, sharing resources adds an economic incentive for the homeowners as well as a higher level of satisfaction with one’s home life. Cohousing is economically viable due to the collective use of the land, and the focus on sustainable building and living practices.
ARC202 students from Hampton University will present boards and models that illustrate the design for a cohousing community located in the ViBe Creative District of Virginia Beach. They look forward to sharing their thoughts on the successes and difficulties of this type of design project, and how it relates to the topic of affordable housing.
Booth #8 – Grand Foyer
Wednesday Presentation Times: 11:15am; 3:05pm
The HomeShed by Homestead Tiny House Co.
Homestead Tiny House Company is a a tiny house builder with an interest in meeting the needs of those most in need. HomeShed is Homestead Tiny House’s entrance into affordable housing. We see HomeShed as a comfortable, high end, and attractive addition to affordable housing. Our HomeSheds have the ability to provide those in need a comfortable transition space to move from point A to point B with confidence and pride. HomeSheds are built with high quality materials and lots of care by our professional builders. These houses are built to last, and withstand daily use for years to come.
No matter how small, a home is still a home. Whether as an accessory dwelling unit or as part of a microvillage, the HomeShed can help us rethink housing. All the way from Homestead Tiny House Company in Alpharetta, Georgia, come see their 128 square foot solution to affordable housing. Sponsored by Virginia Housing, this HomeShed model will be donated to the Habitat for Humanity Peninsula and Greater Williamsburg.
Booth #10 – Outside Entrance
Wednesday Presentation Times: 11:45am; 2:45pm
indieDwell is a modular builder focused on health, durability, energy efficiency and sustainability for the benefit of occupants. indieDwell believes they can impact the housing crisis by specifically focusing on one market—affordable housing. This means they ONLY build housing specifically focused on serving individuals and families who make less than 120% of Area Median Income. This includes building:
- Workforce Housing
- Permanent Supportive Housing
- Emergency Housing
- Residential Treatment Facilities
- Aging in Place Communities
- Section 8 Housing
Come to the indieDwell Experience Lab to quickly walk through your project and evaluate if modular is a good fit. Learn the real costs and benefits of modular and how you can avoid pitfalls in your first modular build. Quickly evaluate your site using indieDwell Standard modular units and TestFit software to find the optimal project density.
Booth #3 – Grand Ballroom
Wednesday Presentation Times: 10:15am (with TestFit); 2:15pm
Pallet is addressing the homelessness crisis with speed, at scale. We build private shelters, community rooms, bathrooms, and more structures to create a village. Our model bridges the gap from living on the street to finding permanent, affordable housing.
Our communities are dignified and secure, with onsite social services, as well as food, showers, laundry, and more. Pallet villages are in one in five states, with 60+ villages across the U.S.
Step inside and tour our transitional housing, designed for unsheltered homelessness. Participants will get a glimpse of living in a Pallet shelter, from relaxing on a cozy bed to learning about the built-in features. Attendees will learn how to build a village to address the homelessness crisis, including working with local governments, finding village funding, and more.
Booth #6 – Grand Ballroom
Wednesday Presentation Times: 10:15am; 3:05pm
TestFit with RBA Architects
TestFit’s algorithms and co-creation tools help users solve site plans for commodity buildings such as multifamily, mixed use, industrial, garden apartments & more in seconds.
You want to know if a prospective site is going to work for you—fast. Shorten feasibility studies from weeks to hours with TestFit and own your deal process from start to finish. TestFit gives you the ability to iterate on deals instantly. Change your unit mix, road layout, parking configurations & much more on the fly. All financials such as land, soft and hard costs, income and expenses & yield-on-cost update in real-time. Reduce your risk by rapidly reviewing more site plans.
As a benefit to HousingX attendees, RBA Architects are offering limited time slots for developers to work with the TestFit team and RBA to develop initial concepts for multi-family sites. If you are interested in working with RBA’s experts, you can contact Tom Retnauer to discuss your potential site prior to the conference. RBA will assign you a time slot during the conference to develop solutions for your site in real time.
Booth #2 – Grand Ballroom
Wednesday Presentation Times: 10:15am (with indieDwell); 11:45am; 3:05pm
VCUarts – Interior Design
How do we design for affordable living?
The shift from housing to living focuses on the influence of human behaviors, and daily or seasonal rituals, on the interior form which, in turn, drives the exterior form. Whether housing is public or private, single or multi-family, in an urban or rural setting, there are behavioral similarities that impact the mental, emotional, physical, and financial wellbeing of individuals and communities.
While public housing is currently an expression of society’s values it does not, as a whole, necessarily reflect the individual’s or community’s values. The current debt crisis has many younger adults living, well into adulthood, with their parents, and studies of older generations suggest that designing for independent and social living has financial and mental health benefits.
Graduate students in the VCU Department of Interior Design are exploring strategies that create housing models that are more adaptable to changing life circumstances and more responsive to the needs of communities and individuals. From movable walls to responsive lighting, come see the ways in which interior design can impact affordability, as well as overall health.
Booth #7 – Grand Foyer
Wednesday Presentation Times: 10:45am; 2:15pm
Virginia Center for Housing Research at Virginia Tech with project:HOMES
Reimagining Manufactured Home Design
project:HOMES and the Virginia Center for Housing Research at Virginia Tech have partnered to reimagine manufactured home design in order to improve quality, affordability and energy efficiency for manufactured housing residents. This presentation will demonstrate the detailed process, teamwork and construction innovation involved in our new innovative design.
Booth #5 – Grand Ballroom
Wednesday Presentation Times: 11:15am; 2:45pm
Work Program Architects
WPA is focused on educational and municipal work, civic landmarks, places of business, and any place where people gather. Our multi-disciplinary design process results in projects unique to their location. The relationships we build with our clients and the community create buildings, neighborhoods, and urban places that connect people in living, working, and social spaces.
Learn about the recent Missing Middle Pattern Book created by WPA by coming to the Experience Lab. There you will understand the various types of Missing Middle Housing, and how to implement it at home. You’ll learn from WPA where Missing Middle can succeed and a public process strategy for introducing Missing Middle to residents.
Participants will work with kit-of-part floorplans and building types to design their very own Missing Middle building or community of diverse Missing Middle building types. We will explore where this housing type is likely and unlikely to succeed. We will walk participants through a public process strategy for introducing Missing Middle to residents, and review what not to do.
Booth #1 – Grand Ballroom
Wednesday Presentation Times: 10:45am; 2:45pm
Get Your Tickets Today
Across the nation, innovative designers, thoughtful developers, and tireless advocates are transforming the way we do housing. HousingX is bringing you an experience that you don’t want to miss. From 3D printing, to transit-oriented communities, to planning regulations, we’re bringing you the nation’s most innovative housing experts to Newport News!