Thanks to CoExist we were just introduced to EVERBLOCK - a system of oversize legos that could just as easily be funky furniture or a DIY disaster relief shelter!
I was at an office building in downtown Los Angeles yesterday, and there was a pop-up table by the coffee shop in the lobby. On the table were emergency food kits in a variety of mis-shapen backpacks and duffle bags, accompanied by various water filtration straws and other "emergency" items. The scene was active and product was moving swiftly. But, of course, LA is a major western city on a major fault-line, so there's high awareness and a ton of resources.
Likewise, this large size lego solution requires pre-thought. Other than the fact it can be broken down into individual bricks, unlike a tent, this solution isn't able to pop out of some super small and easily transportable shelter
As far as the materials of the block are concerned, here's what the site has to say:
EverBlock is a "rigid polypropelyne co-polymer that is chemical and weather resistant and will no absorb bacteria like other more porous materials such as fiberboard or wood. Unlike more porous materials, EverBlock is easily cleaned with standard cleaning solutions and may be pressure washed.
Sections can be modified and redeployed as needed and lighting, power, AC units, windows, and other enhancements can be added and screwed directly into building modules. Everblock can also be used to provide rigid modular walls for existing structures and a more "permanent building feel" for long term deployments."
According to the site, three individual 20ft x 9ft units "ships compactly and 3+ units fit in a standard ISO shipping container. 4+ units fit in a standard 48ft or 53ft truck." The real genius, though, is in its adaptability and ease of use - light, fairly strong, easy to maneuver and fit to site-specific idiosyncracies, Lego requires no learning curve (unless you're an adult), and it might provide some lighthearted fun in the midst of potential madness.
Check out the pics from the EverBlock Designs site.