What's New?

NYC Public Toilets

Public Toilets 
for the Disabled

Here's What We Propose To Do:

In pursuit of our goal to develop a comprehensive system of free public toilets throughout New York City, we will be looking at the following areas:

  • Compiling an inventory of existing facilities throughout the city. Exploring what can be made more available quickly, through reopening closed facilities, upgrading partially functional stations and enumerating instances of existing facilities that are intended for public use but are not made available.

  • Compiling a list of offices, restaurants and other private locations that manage restroom facilities. Determining compliance with municipal mandates as to public use, and conferring with private managements in an effort to induce expanded public use as well as compliance with existing laws.

  • Conducting a study of comparisons with other municipalities in the U.S. and abroad. Examining their treatments of the problem and assessing the viability of applying their solutions to New York. Creating a database of their approaches, including published studies and materials provided by private manufacturers. Examining municipal programs, funding, observable social dynamics, and the use of available and new technologies.

  • Exploring the issue of the advertisement of public facilties, e.g., the existence and clarity of signage, the possibility of telephone "directory assistance"-type referral, etc.

  • Examining the possibility of financial inducements to encourage private businesses to create and/or expand publicly available facilities through the use of one or more of the following: subsidies, tax abatements, maintenance, and in combination with new commercial concessions.

  • Assessing the viability of combining with other public necessities such as showers, CPR equipment, oxygen, bus shelters, phone booths, newsstands, etc.

  • Reviewing the role of the Parks Department in providing public toilets. Discussing better integration of toilets into existing concessions and sports facilities. Press to upgrade and expand facilities.

  • Weighing the impact of free-standing kiosks from the points of view of aesthetics, social acceptance, efficacy and viability. Testing units.

  • Engendering public discussion and debate on the general issue, including needs, aesthetic preferences, the use of public funds, and new ideas. Creating and maintaining Web-based bulletin boards and discussion groups.

  • Addressing the needs of special- and high-need groups, including tourists, outdoor workers, taxicab drivers, and homeless people.

  • The Privy Council,
    49 Houston Street, New York, NY 10012
    Telephone:  (212) 431-0600
    General Enquiries

    This site was last published on: 07 August 2000