A Concrete Idea: Raising New Roofs

Whether it's for disaster relief or relief from urban sprawl, these housing designers have ingenuity nailed down

Building in a Bag

Stuffing a building into a bag is no easy task. Nor is erecting a concrete structure in less than an hour. But Peter Brewin and William Crawford have figured out how to do both. The two British engineers, both 26, dreamed up the Concrete Canvas--a sack of cement-impregnated fabric that morphs into an emergency shelter with the addition of two simple ingredients: water and air. Brewin says the hut can be deployed by a single untrained person in about 40 minutes. Before being inflated, the bag containing the construction material weighs about 500 lbs. The builder fills...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!