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No. 1 - January 25, 2008

Folded Homes and the TekYurts are Finally Here

It’s been a long road from Pakistan. I went to Kashmir in December 2005 with my previous company to deploy fifty Pod shelters for international medical relief organization clinics and personnel housing. Bryan Blondeau, thelogistics specialist for theinternational medical relief organization that worked with me in Pakistan has written an account about it. A year later, the relief organization reported that the Pods were still being used in their second Himalayan winter.

We did some good work in Pakistan, but my mantra coming home was ‘Simplify, Simplify, Simplify!’ So it was back to the drawing board to improve origami architecture.

After Pakistan my ex-partner shut down the old company. So I created Folded Homes and poured three and a half years of experience putting up shelters in six countries into a wholly new design. With the help of Alliance Packaging, the TekYurts and UtiYurts were born. I’m proud of these shelters.  Cheaper, quicker to assemble, more robust, and far more versatile, I think we’ve taken emergency shelter to a whole new level.

Two Years of Development Produce Great Shelter and Wealth of Knowledge

Our yurts are a modern reincarnation of the centuries old Mongolian Yurt. Alliance Packaging developed the prototype and we spent two years testing and refining it.  8,600’ (2,621m) up in the Sierra Mountains we tested a UtiYurt with a 4’ (1.2m) deep snow load.  We tested for rain on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington, where they get 140” (3.54m) a year. And in Oregon, we tested performance in desert conditions. We clocked wind gusts to 75 mph (120 km/hr) at two of the sites. Over the course of development we went through nine major engineering revisions, set up twelve yurts, and made half a hundred improvements to the design. Our development process gives us confidence we have a robust, mature, and well-tested design. Our comprehensive on-line FAQ data base captures that knowledge.

Biomass is Free, Local & Plentiful – Use It!

You can install a wood-burning stove in our yurts.  What keeps the heat in is the unique ability to pack the 3” (7.62cm) thick roof and walls with any locally available biomass lying around; transforming the yurt into an insulated winter shelter. No other emergency shelter takes advantage of this free, locally available resource to keep the cold out.

TekYurt Make-Over

You can customize our UtiYurts and TekYurts with additional doors and windows, and you can connect them together to create multi-room structures and enclosed compounds.  With this versatility you can rapidly deliver thousands of simple, inexpensive refugee shelters, or you can set up secure housing groups, clinics, relief team base camps, or your own multi-room origami house in the back-country.

Participate in the Folded Homes Mission

Folded Homes LLC was incorporated Q1 2008 to provide environmentally appropriate and cost-effective solutions for human shelter. We focus particularly on addressing humanitarian shelter needs at the same time as we offer shelters for personal use.  Folded Homes is seeking distributors for our consumer yurt shelters. Investment inquiries are also welcome.


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