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Thread: NYC About to Get Bathroom Break

  1. #1
    Complete & Utter Member j.m@talk's Avatar
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    NYC About to Get Bathroom Break

    NEW YORK - You don't have to be an urban planner to figure out that there aren't enough public bathrooms in New York. Just check out the lines for the ladies room at Rockefeller Center or sniff the air wafting from any alley on a Saturday night.

    Toiletlessness is a chronic problem in Manhattan, and many New Yorkers spend a lifetime assembling a mental map of those special hotels, coffee shops and bookstores about town that have clean restrooms open to the public.

    Some small amount of relief could be on the way.



    City officials announced this week that they have chosen a Spanish advertising company to install as many as 20 public pay toilets in Manhattan, as part of a larger project to replace 330 newsstands and 3,300 bus shelters.

    Under the agreement, announced Wednesday, Cemusa Inc. would install the toilets and other structures for free, and then hope to turn a profit by selling advertising on the kiosks and shelters.

    Patrons would pay a fee no more than a dollar to use the toilets, which would be in operation by 2007. The city would get a share of the advertising revenue perhaps $1 billion over 20 years.

    The plan sounds rosy, on paper, but it should be noted that New York has been close to approving more public toilets before.

    Efforts to introduce something akin to the self-cleaning "sanisettes" that dot Paris have come and gone since the early 1990s.

    Former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani requested proposals from vendors interested in operating pay toilets, but ultimately flushed the project.

    But New York's transportation commissioner, Iris Weinshall, said the idea's time has come.

    "We have millions of tourists who come here all the time. Thank God, the city is doing great, and people are out and about. But it is a challenge to find a place to go to the bathroom," she said.

    It may be a challenge to find spots for Cemusa's freestanding toilets too.

    While all New Yorkers want access to a bathroom while running errands or out on the town, fewer probably want one standing on the sidewalk outside their apartment building. Some business owners will likely feel the same way.

    Weinshall said the city will be sensitive to those concerns, and would look to place the facilities in central locations, maybe at the fringes of parks or other public spots that attract large numbers of people.

    A handful of pay toilets are already in place in various spots around the city.

    Patrons pay 50 cents to enter a one-person restroom at Herald Square. Push a button, and the electronic door slides closed and locks. Customers have the bathroom for themselves for up to 15 minutes. After that, the door opens automatically. A large digital clock keeps track of the remaining time.

    New York could do with more such spots, said 38-year-old city native Michelle Lee.

    "Especially if they're clean," she said. "I'll pay 50 cents for that. Some of the public bathrooms here are pretty terrible."


  2. #2
    Ultimate Member Strawbs's Avatar
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    Is this all you could find at the bottom of the barrel?

  3. #3
    Complete & Utter Member j.m@talk's Avatar
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    Well its allways handy to know where yas can go for a wazz


  4. #4
    Banned zybch's Avatar
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    I was amazed the first time I saw a pay loo in the UK. Having to take a dump is something that everyone has to do and the provision of free pulic toilets is something that we allready pay for through our taxes and land rates.

    Of course, making people pay will give lando nothing to do of a friday night.

  5. #5
    Complete & Utter Member j.m@talk's Avatar
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    Well taking a tiddle is usually free....... But ya gotta pay fer a dumping ground

    "Spending a penny" anyone ?


  6. #6
    Banned zybch's Avatar
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    How much does it cost to spend a penny now?

  7. #7
    Complete & Utter Member j.m@talk's Avatar
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    dunno ....... 20p I fink ............... 50p in the posh places


  8. #8
    Banned zybch's Avatar
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    Was 20p in York when I was last there ages ago.
    What do you mean by posh? No turds left on the seat kind of thing?

  9. #9
    Complete & Utter Member j.m@talk's Avatar
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    Thats the kiddy


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