Overcoming ADA Design Hiccups

During our 30 years in business, we've had several projects where space planning, ADA accessible furniture and equipment integration did not always play nicely. As ADA-friendly spaces increase, the ubiquitous, all-in-one solution to presentation furniture becomes all but obsolete. An articulating lectern inside a small space sometimes just doesn't work. The ways in which it articulates could change based on available space, budget or specific user disability. With so many aspects to keep in mind, the ability to personalize is invaluable to ensuring each variable is met and every space is accommodated accordingly.

As a rule of thumb, there are three essential guidelines to ADA furniture: adequate knee space, equal access to controls and a work surface at proper wheelchair height. Although a desk or table is the most obvious answer, it does not always work for every application. Not every space has room for a desk, especially one that includes racked equipment. Tables are simple and can be added to most spaces but they don't always afford much storage space. A more common and compact solution is to specify a lectern or workstation. They are capable of holding a decent amount of rack units, have the ability to be machined for various cut outs and can be customized to match different architecture in each room. For us, to satisfy the important aspects of ADA in a smaller unit, we include a hydraulic lift to take the lectern from sitting to standing height as well as a pullout surface to create a knee space and pull all components toward the seated presenter. This seemingly simple solution is not a fail-safe for everyone, however.

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Goodbye & Good Luck

Marshall Furniture would like to inform its dealers and customers that Adam Fischer has left the company to pursue other ventures. Notably, Adam has taken up a career in law enforcement, a personal goal of his for many years. We at Marshall Furniture would like to wish him well and are sure that he will continue to help others just as he has done with us for many years. For those that have worked with Adam in the past, please know that we welcome your continued business and that our sales team is here to help with any projects you many have started with Adam.

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ADA Compliance & Custom Furniture

A Brief History:

Signed in 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all public areas, including jobs, education and transportation. Recently, there has been a surge of higher education, courtrooms, businesses and multiple other markets coming to terms with the need for ADA furniture in their spaces. Many re-designs now request movable monitors, easily accessible technology and adjustable furniture pieces. But what is ADA compliance? Presumably, when someone thinks of ADA furniture, it likely comes in the form of ramps, walkways or motorized wheelchair lifts. Free-standing furniture, however, requires a complex mix of adjustable parts and available space to meet ADA. The type of furniture must first be considered, the equipment storage and interactive technology needs have to be integrated and then available seating at the unit needs to be accommodated. At Marshall Furniture, our sensitivity and versatility to ever-changing needs has provided us the opportunity to learn and implement the guidelines needed to ensure compliance.

ADA & Furniture:

Most assume adjusting furniture height is the end-all to solving ADA issues but that simply isn't true. When you're seated, it's not just about work surface height. Users want to sit comfortably – so they need knee space. Users want to interact with all technology – so they need equal access to controls. In order to meet all three – adjustable height, available knee space and equal interaction with technology – we've got to start at the beginning and work our way to the end.

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Catching Up

Happy holiday season everyone!

We apologize for being away for so long. Our monthly post goal went a little off track for a few months while we all clamored to catch up with the influx of business we've been getting lately. It's been a busy time for us and we couldn't be happier! Therefore, we thought it best that our first blog back from our hiatus should be an update on what we've been up to since we last spoke.

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Solid Wood Versus Veneer

We're about to cannonball right into a topic that has been discussed and argued many times over.

Why? Well, there's plenty of preconceived notions and opinions out there that advocate for one method of construction or the other. Interestingly enough, people are still divided on this front with strong advocacy and exclusivity for one side or the other. In our own experience, we've come across plenty of instances where a client has asked us to build using their preferred method.

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