When a disaster strikes, it’s often difficult to get shelters up in time for displaced residents. Enter Concrete Canvas‘s new Concrete Cloth, a durable waterproof building material made of cement sandwiched between fabric. The cloth, which won Material ConneXion‘s Material of the Year 2009 award, can be molded into any shape when bonded with water — and it takes just two hours to set!

concrete cloth, shelters, disaster, pvc

Perhaps the most useful application for Concrete Cloth is in disaster relief, where the material could be used to quickly and efficiently house both people and food. Since the cloth has a life span of 10 years, it can be used in situations where displacement is prolonged. Concrete Cloth’s durability also makes it ideal for military use.

There’s just one drawback to Concrete Cloth: the material contains PVC, a plastic that leaches toxic chemicals. If Concrete Canvas could figure out a way to replace PVC with something else, we’d love to see Concrete Cloth used around the world.

+ Concrete Cloth

Via Dezeen