Recently, engineers have turned to the thin shell in dealing with difficult foundation problems that cannot be solved economically by other techniques. Due to its curvature a shell has considerably greater surface area than a flat plate of similar plan size. Loads are thus distributed over a greater area and the pressure per square inch is reduced appreciably. The three-dimensional shape of shells also acts as an anchor for the structures supported in this fashion. The shells tend to resist horizontal movement because they extend into the earth rather than simply resting on it. One of the most promising shell shapes for foundation work is the hyperbolic paraboloid. Its double curvature provides excellent anchorage and generous surface area for a given volume of concrete. Although still in its infancy, the shell foundation holds great promise. It offers simplicity of design, ease of forming and casting, and low cost. This potent combination of advantages won't go overlooked for long in the many areas of the United States where poor subsoils constantly challenge the ingenuity of designers and builders.