Kevin Warnock

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New Avenue brings two of its homes to Moscone Center for the Pacific Coast Builders Conference June 22-24, 2011

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New Avenue, Inc. houses being towed up 3rd Street in San Francisco, California USA June 17, 2011

New Avenue, Inc. houses being towed up 3rd Street in San Francisco, California USA June 17, 2011

My friend Kevin Casey is on a roll with his New Avenue, Inc. startup.

Today he was literally on a roll, or, rather, two of his company’s products were rolling up Route 101 from San Jose, California to San Francisco, California, about 50 miles.

New Avenue designs, finances, builds and installs quality ADUs, which stands for Accessory Dwelling Units. ADUs are commonly known in the US as inlaw units or granny units. An ADU is a smaller house destined to be a second home on a single family residential lot. It’s public policy and official law in California that cities allow ADUs.

The two New Avenue products rolling up 101 are houses ready for decades of full time living. These are not cheap mobile homes destined for the scrap heap in 15 or 20 years. These are quality homes built with high quality materials and appliances. New Avenue homes are luxurious enough that they make sense in even the backyards of wealthy Californians.

I’ve a big fan of what Casey is doing, and I’ve written here about New Avenue four times before. I have even toyed with the idea of ‘competing’ with Casey by making ADUs from recycled ocean shipping containers. I’ve shelved those plans to focus my efforts on gOffice and its companion blog. But the concept of living in a smartly designed smaller home that consumes fewer resources is profoundly appealing to me, which is why I follow Casey’s progress with such fascination.

New Avenue, Inc. house in front of Moscone Center, June 17, 2011. Photo by Kevin Warnock.

New Avenue, Inc. house in front of Moscone Center, June 17, 2011. Photo by Kevin Warnock.

As I wrote about here last month, Kevin Casey invited me to build an aquaponics system for one of his homes. That home has been on public display in front of the new City Hall in San Jose, CA for the last six weeks or so. San Jose was gracious enough to allow Casey to reposition the house for a week so it could be shown publically at the Pacific Coast Builders Conference (PCBC), happening at the Moscone [Convention] Center in San Francisco June 22-24, 2011, next week.

San Jose paid Casey to build the house as part of a green technology exhibit called the San Jose Green Vision Clean Energy Showcase funded by the United States Department of Energy with Recovery Act money. It was via the San Jose exhbit that New Avenue came to the attention of the PCBC conference, which paid Casey to design and build the larger ~750 square foot house you see disassembled on the three semi trucks in the picture at the top of this article. This green home which is also green in color, will be a centerpiece of the PCBC convention, and it is literally in the center of Moscone North. The houses were delivered at 5:50 this morning, just as the sun was rising, so that’s why the picture is dark… note the reflection of the headlights on the pavement. I was extremely lucky that the Moscone parking garage opened 15 minutes early at 5:45am. If it hadn’t, I wouldn’t have been six stories up with a windowless view of 3rd street to take the picture above. Thank you to the garage staff!

New Avenue, Inc. homes being unloaded inside Moscone Center, June 17, 2011. Photo by Kevin Warnock.

New Avenue, Inc. homes being unloaded inside Moscone Center, June 17, 2011. Photo by Kevin Warnock.

The San Jose exhibit house, painted brown, is now in the driveway in front of Moscone North, at street level. This means thousands of cars will pass this house for the next week or so, and thousands of people will walk past it. As far as I know, no admission will be charged for members of the public to tour this house, so you don’t need to be a paid attendee of the PCBC conference to pay a visit.

The aquaponics system I built for Casey is on the front deck, just as it is when the house in in San Jose. The plants in the grow bed survived the windy truck ride North without cover, to my amazement. I didn’t want to risk the fish splashing out of the aquarium onto the roadway, so I removed them yesterday and brought them home with me in my car. I cleaned up the tank, filled it with declorinated fresh water and reintroduced the fish to their home this afternoon, once the New Avenue house was safely parked in San Francisco.

I will be on hand during the PCBC conference to explain aquaponics to visitors. I already told a dozen people about aquaponics today — mostly Moscone Center staff, including Lorenzo, a journeyman painter who engaged me in 20 minutes of conversation about small home living and gardening. He was extremely enthusiastic about aquaponics and the New Avenue house… he really wanted the house for his vacation property where he goes hunting and fishing.

New Avenue, Inc. house in front of Moscone Center, June 17, 2011, with aquaponics system on deck

New Avenue, Inc. house in front of Moscone Center, June 17, 2011, with aquaponics system on deck

I shot video of the house moves, and it’s being encoded for upload as I write this post. I will add a companion post tomorrow to show that video. These houses are so large they needed multiple escort vehicles to get to San Francisco safely. It was quite a spectacle watching the 750 square foot home be delivered by three trucks into the convention center. Be sure to have a look at that video on June 18, 2011.

Written by Kevin Warnock

June 17th, 2011 at 11:49 pm

One Response to 'New Avenue brings two of its homes to Moscone Center for the Pacific Coast Builders Conference June 22-24, 2011'

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  1. hi there!

    I saw your room advertisement on Craig’s List while early perusing the web to get an idea of what’s out there, and while I’m unable financially to move to SF for another month or two, I just wanted to leave a compliment and let you know I think you’re quite cool and I was fascinated to read about aquaponics. I’m really excited for my move to SF, especially after reading in a few different places about Rainbow Grocery. Perhaps we’ll run into each other while out and about! Like-minded environmentally conscious people are one of the main reasons I’m excited to move to the area.

    Best regards!

    Anna Baker

    25 Jun 11 at 12:27 am

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