It takes 24 hours and two people to turn Cortex Shelter into something very much like a real house. And “provide stability and security to people who have lost more”.

“Our mission is to create stability and security for people who have lost more.

This is how Parisian architectural studio Cutwork illustrates the Cortex Shelter project: a special tent made from a technological fabric of roll-up concrete. A project that will improve the lives of many displaced people and refugees in the world.

A concrete tent? It’s not magic, it’s design of materials. The Cortex Shelter can be set up in two people and 24 hours. After hydration, the special material of the tent dries and hardens on its own, transforming the accommodation into a stable shelter, which can last up to 30 years. But let’s take a step back.

In the world, – explain Cutwork, – there are about 25 million displaced people who, according to estimates by the World Bank, by 2050 will become 143 million due to climate change and inequalities.

For this reason, design and technology can and must intervene to restore dignity to people forced to live in tent cities. In the Nigerian one of Dadaab” there are those who have been living in tents for 20 years.

The normal tents, however, are fragile: reassembled on average every 6 months, they often break, burn, are cut by thieves and other malicious people. A stable and safe shelter is the most necessary for the quality of life of men, women and children in difficulty.

This is where Cortex Shelter comes in, the refugee accommodation that combines two technologies: Cutwork’s folding metal tube and Cortex Composites’ special roll-up concrete fabric.

To mount the frame, simply bend the metal tubes, then hook in the insulating panels, heat insulating and washable from the inside. Finally, the innovative fabric patented by Cortex Composite is laid from the outside. Simply add water, even dirty water: within 24 hours the concrete will have hardened and will protect the structure, not only from the weather, but also from the fire and from the cracks of the knives.

The tent can accommodate a family of 4-6 people and has many other advantages, such as solar panels on the roof provide energy for the light and mobile phones, a convenient division of environments that also include sanitary facilities.

Cutwork is an award-winning studio specializing in coworking and cohabitation environments. According to its professionals, the revolution is not only in the material, but in the point of view: “currently we think of refugee camps as temporary accommodations. However, in more and more cases, temporary solutions make less and less sense. We need long-term housing solutions that are safe, affordable and sustainable.