Germany has experienced an unprecedented influx of refugees over the last years. In dealing with the so-called crisis, the management of settlement and housing of refugees is a crucial aspect. Germany’s asylum policy—torn between long-term versus short-term and permanent versus temporary approaches and solutions—has equally contradictory spatial implications. This article brings together policy with design. Through the analysis of an architectural project database featuring recent refugee housing projects across Germany and some of its neighboring countries, this paper explores design responses to the refugee influx. It shows that the refugee shelter design is equally torn and reflects the political inconsistency that is symptomatic of the wider context of Germany’s current asylum policy.