Home > Chatter > Public Restrooms, Destroying Cities, 45 mph to Nowhere …Chatter

Public Restrooms, Destroying Cities, 45 mph to Nowhere …Chatter

It is astounding the excuses made for the lack of public bathrooms in downtown Traverse City. #JustSayin

The fact that nobody thought of putting bathrooms into the two parking decks and then staff and representatives look around like they don’t know what to do is absurd (Ticker).  I understand that as a culture we under value immediate needs and human nature (MyWHaT), it is quite clear in some of the brush-off comments on The Ticker, but at a certain point it becomes obvious that if we are to have a place that goes beyond adequate, then dedicated, attractive and inviting public bathrooms need to happen.

My vote: convert “Lot O” into a park with a LEED certified bathroom/warming area and if another deck goes in, a bathroom is required. Where we pee shouldn’t fall on the backs of businesses, lest they choose to rebel (NYTimes).

~ photo by four12

The Chatter

(My apologies, there may just be too much here.)

with numerous studies from different cities the world over repeatedly suggesting positive economic benefits on a local scale, urban bicycle networks could provide our cities with a much-needed economic boost.”

We’ve built a 45 mile per hour world, one that moves too slow to be efficient yet too fast to provide a platform for value. Our transportation system embraces mediocrity, not from a lack of resources, but from a lack of focus. We must quit fooling ourselves, understand what it means to really create value in a transportation system and commit ourselves to building Strong Towns.”

Listen to to the Strong Town’s post:



  • RT everybodywalk Quote of the Day: “The foot feels the foot when it feels the ground.” ~Buddha
  • RT stevemouzon One test for potential for greatness is how infrequently someone lets urgent small things trump important big things
  • RT transportdata “Social life happens when we walk or bike. It doesn’t happen in a car.”
  • RT urbandata $45 of every $100 spent at a locally-owned business stays in local economy. Only $14 of that same $100 spent at chain store stays.
  • RT Maddz4planning Not new knowledge. Crime leads to perceived risk and inactivity. Encouraging biking and walking is about more than just lanes and sidewalks
  • RT ellyblue Yeah! RT @remyholwick: elizabeth braun begs to differ; she bikes in heels, dresses, and suits– aggressively– daily, and has for years.
  • MT brainpicker “Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.”

The Wrap

We can do better” is the winning film for a LA based contest called “Changing Your City for the Better.“– I’d like to see a campaign like this for Traverse City, just say’in.

Have a weekend!

  1. Matt
    November 25, 2011 at 4:58 pm

    Option F: Build a $3 million tunnel and then put them IN THE TUNNEL!!!

  2. Pat Petrovich
    November 27, 2011 at 11:51 am

    Having been a wholesale sales rep for many years throughout northern lower Michigan, I can guide one to all the best available restrooms in the region and few of them are conveniently located. They are in public buildings such as libraries, grocery chains, hospitals, government buildings and churches…. seldom in down towns where retailers want us to shop. From a marketing standpoint, think of the original Milliken’s Department store restrooms… who didn’t head there? On the way in and out impulse purchases were made, lunch or coffee on the mezzanine was convenient, etc…. Wouldn’t it behoove some merchants to pay a restroom attendant simply to get people in their stores? I think it’s in the “service” category.

  3. November 28, 2011 at 8:11 am

    Thanks, Pat. I’d only throw out there for comparison, that a mall typically has ‘public’ bathrooms at either end and in the middle of the edifice. Their sole purpose is consumerism and yet, they make it easy for people.

    Downtowns are, or can be, the nucleus of a community. They are common areas that do indeed offer services and shopping, but they are also gathering points for much more than that. We don’t always go downtown to consume or wish to feel the pressure to. Plus, there are times, like when a child is throwing a fit, that neutral, public bathrooms are more appropriate. Typically, in those cases ‘searching’ for a bathroom can add a lot of stress to a situation.

    Yes, it makes sense for private businesses to be welcoming and encourage foot traffic. Similarly, so does a great community with welcoming public spaces.

  4. November 28, 2011 at 9:40 am

    Two quick comments. When the Vatican was first designed, the architectural drawings were returned with the words: “Do you expect only angels to reside here?” There were no bathrooms! Two: “Anyone leaving home or office is put to periodic torture because great pains have been taken to hide the location of rest rooms.”

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