Renovating the Public Bathroom

People generally dislike using public bathrooms. There’s a perception that they’re dirty, that you’re getting mixed in with other people’s waste. While this can be true, a regularly-cleaned and well-maintained public bathroom is as clean as one in people’s homes.


At times, the problem with the public bathroom is more about what the person thinks or feels. This is a little harder to fix, though the right renovation work can help put users at ease. You can’t eliminate all of them, but you can make it less uncomfortable.


First, there’s the fact that there’s no room for “rest.”


Human beings lead lives designed around careful management of impressions. We present ourselves as dignified, civilized human beings. This requires a combination of gesture, scent, sound, and visual elements.


Walk into a bathroom with a co-worker and that often goes out the window. You’re mixed in with the wrong smells, the wrong sounds. You’re lumped in with the childhood taboo tied around excrement, a mindset that enforces discreet euphemisms instead of just calling it like it is.


Consider adjusting the Perth bathroom renovations. Make it so that the public bathroom is built like a private one. You have less “capacity” for people, but it’s also more comfortable for people to use.


The other issue is that bathroom stalls are designed to discourage privacy.


Take a look at the basic design here. There’s not a lot of room, and it can be almost claustrophobic.


There are large gaps at the bottom and top of the walls, as well as the door – a quirk of the American bathroom stall design. Anyone who crouches low enough or gets high enough can look right inside. This is before you factor in the risk of identification via footwear.


Between the lack of space and the risk of being seen, the stall feels uncomfortable. It subtly encourages us to do what we’re there to do and get out. As quickly as we can manage, if at all possible.


This one has an easy fix. Install saner, more private enclosures. Make the gaps smaller, so no one can just crouch or climb. This includes making it so the door doesn’t expose the footwear.


There’s also the radical option. Buy toilets from Japan or Spain. Why? These are some of the most advanced bathroom tech available, but you don’t need those. What you’re looking for are models that combine the two most used elements of a public bathroom into one machine: the sink and the toilet.

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