Idiot architecture

Lamb ChoppedLamb Chopped Shipmate
So my nephew gets married in a vineyard that has a glass floor in its tasting room, with a meeting room below. Yeah, all of us in dresses were squeezing oh-so-carefully around the perimeters. What other examples of WTF architecture are you running into?
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  • SojournerSojourner Shipmate
    Best excuse for frilly underwear ever
  • RicardusRicardus Shipmate
    I nominate Liverpool One Bus Station.

    The original bus station was an uninspired concrete block that was nevertheless fully enclosed from the elements. Then some genius had the idea of knocking it down and replacing it with this.

    Note the massive gap between the roof and what might charitably be called the 'walls'. Note that on the non-road side, there is a gap in the 'walls' between every other column. Note that the whole thing is perfectly aligned to the Irish Sea winds, the river being just out of sight at the far end of the picture. Note that some architect got paid to remove every possible advantage the old bus station had.

    (But it's so exciting! It's mildly asymmetric, and the roof curves a bit!)
  • This hasn't been built yet, but, if it is, it'll be a real WTF? thing to come across...
    https://theconstructionindex.co.uk/news/view/giant-phone-box-wins-scottish-ideas-contest
  • Flat roofs. Why do people keep building buildings with flat roofs?

    Here's the thing about flat roofs. They leak. They all leak. A roof doesn't need very much pitch for all the rain to reliably run off it. So why do people keep building flat things?
  • They want to use them for something? But I agree. I had to help a friend through the insurance claim after an F-0 tornado hit her flat-roofed house. The damage was memorable.
  • TelfordTelford Shipmate
    Flat roofs. Why do people keep building buildings with flat roofs?

    Here's the thing about flat roofs. They leak. They all leak. A roof doesn't need very much pitch for all the rain to reliably run off it. So why do people keep building flat things?

    We have extentions that were originally part of a massive garage and workshop. It doesn't leak at the moment but it is noisy when it rains heavily or when squirrels run across
  • Simon ToadSimon Toad Shipmate
    So my nephew gets married in a vineyard that has a glass floor in its tasting room, with a meeting room below. Yeah, all of us in dresses were squeezing oh-so-carefully around the perimeters. What other examples of WTF architecture are you running into?

    I want to go there wearing a kilt and wear something funny as undies. I'm thinking a strap on dildo worn backwards.
  • SojournerSojourner Shipmate
    Why not commando?
  • Flat roofs. Why do people keep building buildings with flat roofs?

    Here's the thing about flat roofs. They leak. They all leak. A roof doesn't need very much pitch for all the rain to reliably run off it. So why do people keep building flat things?

    Intriguingly flat roofs here don't seem to be too bad (our primary department has one). My theory is the wind helps drive off any water that was considering sitting around.
  • MaryLouiseMaryLouise Purgatory Host, Epiphanies Host
    edited March 4
    Sometimes the gender bias in architecture and interior design is so obviously masculine or feminine you wonder if the designer ever met a woman who doesn't want to sit in a pink room looking at herself in a tinted mirror all the time.

    Upmarket boutique hotels often design over-sized bars or lobbies with a very odd atavistic male fantasy in mind: high counters where men stand and only their dates perch on wobbly stools because women aren't tall enough to just lean on counters and short men don't count; oversized leather sofas where men can sprawl with trousered legs wide apart while dates in short tight skirts teeter on the seat's edge with exposed legs tightly together, wondering how to reach their drink without exposing too much cleavage when they bend over; trendy dark interiors with exposed beams, raw materials and roughly plastered walls and even fake animal hides on polished floors (men don't have to worry about tripping or skidding about in stiletto heels). I once found a solitary architectural reference to creating leisure spaces where young under-dressed women would be exposed and sexy in their discomfort, the prey and not the hunter. These imagined men are straightforward and direct: they like raw honest textures, angular or solid and functional furnishings and the ambience most often evoked in the 21st century is still a upper-class men-only clubs or hunting lodges in Victorian times where men could smoke and read and talk away from women, with hunting-shooting-fishing trophies on the walls.

    It's nonsense and yet the fantasy persists in so much of luxury travel design. When the black South African writer Njabulo Ndebele visited luxury game lodges in South Africa, he coined the term 'leisure colonist' to describe the fantasy about 'a real man as explorer on safari' behind the neo-colonial fantasy design he saw as racist and hypermasculine: stuffed dead animal trophies, collections of spears and elephant guns, black staff dressed in beaded exotic headdresses, rawhide drums beaten to summon guests to meals, the local rangers armed with hunting rifles in a place where the wildlife are kept well away from accommodation. In a wilderness of drought and water shortages, guests have private plunge pools, tented pavilions have air-conditioning and wifi, fresh flowers and seafood are flown in daily. Boy's Own adventures in darkest Africa where 'authentic' exotic Africa is recreated at vast expense despite the claimed eco-conservation ethos.

    Travel before Covid. Will it change?
  • Interesting to observe the gender difference exhibited so far in comments about the glass floored room...men have treated it as an excuse for a joke, whereas for women it is a serious issue. Just illustrates how sometimes we really do seem to inhabit different worlds...
  • SojournerSojourner Shipmate
    Not this woman
  • MaryLouise wrote: »
    Sometimes the gender bias in architecture and interior design is so obviously masculine or feminine you wonder if the designer ever met a woman who doesn't want to sit in a pink room looking at herself in a tinted mirror all the time.

    Well, there are exterior designs to consider too. Firstly, were there any female Brutalists? Secondly, all our new tower blocks look like cocks. Deliberately so.
  • Simon ToadSimon Toad Shipmate
    edited March 4
    Sojourner wrote: »
    Why not commando?

    I suffer from severe hemorrhoids.

    GR, how is the situation not ludicrous? I reckon body issues are a gendered thing, but toilet humor is universal.
  • SandemaniacSandemaniac Shipmate
    There's a building in Oxford that I won't name, but it's a three-storey block on a square plan squeezed into a small plot. Someone decided it needed a light well in the middle, with the result that it's effectively four corridors round a hole in the middle - it's a lab building, so the labs are thin, made worse by the extra corridor squeezed round the edge. Thankfully I never had to work there, the people I knew who did loathed it.
  • MaryLouiseMaryLouise Purgatory Host, Epiphanies Host
    edited March 4
    @DocTor, oh yes, a number of women Modernist architects and designers were comfortable working with phallic or masculinist design. And many male architects opted for alinear flow and curves and loved colour. Yet the difficulties for differently-abled, queer, female or black guests remain in most structural design.

    What @Lamb Chopped describes is that 'oops' design blip when the architect or decorator, male or female simply forgets the logistics of what people wear and what women need to feel safe or comfortable in an interior space. Some of us have stayed in hotel bedrooms that have floor-to-ceiling glass walls and overlook busy city streets at night, and I've no doubt men as well as women might not want to undress in view of strangers. There's also the tendency in minimalist design to imagine spaces as depopulated landscapes, a blank canvas that is an aesthetic object in itself -- so the designer somehow forgets to work out what someone who has to cook, eat, sleep, have sex, etc, needs to be able to locate or use or climb over. Clients who loved architect John Pawson's clutter-free interiors would find themselves walking into 'invisible' glass doors or walls or that the open plan living area had no power points close enough to the concealed cookers. I did a review of a magnificent hotel in Thailand that had a rooftop area bounded with lush small flowering bushes instead of railings, a drop of 35 floors and small children running back and forth unsupervised.

    But what I've often wondered about are the leisure fantasies that inform wedding venues or luxury boutique hotels (a romantic faux-Tuscan farmhouse and vineyard, desert island getaways, Asian-style spas and water pavilions) because the theatrical magic might work at a practical level but the unexamined retro fantasies are often just exoticising tropes or appropriation.
  • EutychusEutychus Shipmate
    edited March 4
    MaryLouise wrote: »
    I did a review of a magnificent hotel in Thailand that had a rooftop area bounded with lush small flowering bushes instead of railings, a drop of 35 floors and small children running back and forth unsupervised.

    Pity you missed the twelve-storey church headquarters there which includes an enclosed multi-storey car park inside the building several floors up, opening directly, and I mean directly, onto a large meeting venue on one level. Below the level with the 500-seater auditorium, that is.
  • Fawkes CatFawkes Cat Shipmate
    Ricardus wrote: »
    I nominate Liverpool One Bus Station.

    The original bus station was an uninspired concrete block that was nevertheless fully enclosed from the elements. Then some genius had the idea of knocking it down and replacing it with this.

    Note the massive gap between the roof and what might charitably be called the 'walls'. Note that on the non-road side, there is a gap in the 'walls' between every other column. Note that the whole thing is perfectly aligned to the Irish Sea winds, the river being just out of sight at the far end of the picture. Note that some architect got paid to remove every possible advantage the old bus station had.

    (But it's so exciting! It's mildly asymmetric, and the roof curves a bit!)

    There's all sorts of issues here. In no particular order
    - the lack of walls/windows on the right hand side (away from the road)? That's because that's the tram platform. What trams? Well, yes, that's another problem...
    - the lack of joining up between roof and wall? I think this may have been intentional. It's sad but true that a number of people don't understand the distinction between bus stations on the one hand and urinals and emergency shelters on the other hand. The high level of ventilation stops the smell from the first and discourages the second
    - the demolition of the previous, perfectly adequate bus station? This one's more complicated, and what follows is my opinion based on what I know about how planning works rather than specific knowledge of what actually happened. Here goes...

    The Liverpool One bus station is part of the Liverpool One development, a large, privately funded, shopping area in the heart of Liverpool. In my experience, when any development larger than a single house is proposed, the initial planning application is for a very tasteful development, with plenty of planning gain (i.e. things that might be considered to benefit the community) but with a wildly over-intense density of development. This is submitted to the local government planners, who fall about laughing and return it to the developers for rework. The developers then come back with a much less intensive development, but explain how sadly they are no longer able to fund the various planning gains so have had to remove them. Eventually, a more modest scheme (which realistically was what everyone had in mind in the first place) is agreed and built.

    With Liverpool One, the initial application was much what you would expect - loads of shops, a cinema to rent to Odeon, high-density hotels and apartments. The planning gain consisted of replacing a lot of things that already existed in the area but would have to be demolished to make way for the new development - hence the new bus station, a new Quaker meeting house, a new (but smaller) site for the BBC, an urban park and so on. The developers reckoned that there was no way that the council would accept the density that they proposed, nor would the various interested parties accept their loss of facilities, and so in version 2.0 of the scheme they would be able to come back with a reduced density, but without the planning gain.

    But the developers miscalled it. I understand the Society of Friends weren't keen (they'd only just cleared the mortgage on the meeting house that they had rebuilt after the second world war) but the BBC were quite taken with the idea of a new site - the previous studios were entirely analogue, and this (in the 2000s) was a great opportunity to get a technologically up to date fully digital studio. Most importantly, Liverpool City Council (the planning authority) were desperate to redevelop the city centre, particularly to connect the existing retail area with the Albert Dock area, and as quickly as possible. So to the developer's surprise, their original plan was accepted in full - and the council then insisted that it was all built.

    Hence the loss of the old bus station (which was rather nice) - and why the replacement does look a little rushed: it was never meant to be built but to be bargained into something more modest but more practical.
  • Liverpool One bus station I've encountered in late December in the snow. I blame it for the resultant chest infection. All of us waiting for our delayed bus, juddering trying to find some shelter, any shelter, somewhere. It hasn't encouraged me to return to Liverpool since.
  • SandemaniacSandemaniac Shipmate
    That reminds me of the time I reported the "failure" of the phone line in our student house one January (it turned out to be because the previous incumbents had cancelled it, but BT had taken until December to turn it off...) from a phone box on the cliff top in Herne Bay. The person at the other end of the line asked if I could do anything about the howling noise. I pointed out that their nice new phone box had a gap at the bottom with no glass in, and the wind blowing through was making the noise.
  • MaryLouise wrote: »
    Clients who loved architect John Pawson's clutter-free interiors would find themselves walking into 'invisible' glass doors or walls

    I once lived in brand new student accommodation that had a glass entry like that. After three people in the first two days reported injuries from walking full-tilt into an invisible glass wall (because of course it was a glass porch with staggered doors, so you couldn't walk in a straight line through it), the glass walls rapidly acquired frosted coatings at eye-height.

    You're right on the nail about architects and designers either forgetting to think about functionality, or dismissing it as somehow unimportant when compared to their grand artistic vision. Some colleagues of mine got moved into a new office building shortly before Covid - the offices are all shiny and glass, and in order not to spoil the "look", they aren't permitted to have useful functional things like bookshelves. So I now know several people who work surrounded by a stack of cardboard boxes containing their reference materials.
  • SandemaniacSandemaniac Shipmate
    St Cat's college in Oxford was originally not intended to have curtains in the rooms as internal reflections across the quad would stop anyone seeing in. Fine until it get dark and you switch your light on... And this was a new woman's college as well...
  • MaryLouiseMaryLouise Purgatory Host, Epiphanies Host
    edited March 4
    Eutychus wrote: »
    MaryLouise wrote: »
    I did a review of a magnificent hotel in Thailand that had a rooftop area bounded with lush small flowering bushes instead of railings, a drop of 35 floors and small children running back and forth unsupervised.

    Pity you missed the twelve-storey church headquarters there which includes an enclosed multi-storey car park inside the building several floors up, opening directly, and I mean directly, onto a large meeting venue on one level. Below the level with the 500-seater auditorium, that is.

    Terrifying, @Eutychus . The general lack of safety features in many parking lots and car parks can be minor but infuriating: no speed bumps, no signage for stop or yield, no indication of speed limits or how long one is allowed to park, sites exposed to bad weather conditions with rough or slippery surfaces, unsecured and dirty ablution facilities.

    The bigger problem though is that many parking areas are badly lit and unsafe after dark for women on their own, with inadequate security to prevent assaults and crime, pedestrian routes that are under-utilised and hence lonely (or even derelict) places even in broad daylight, adjoining bus stops or train stations where women have to wait alone, exposed and vulnerable for an undetermined time, poorly monitored subways and stairwells in public buildings. Urban design that prioritises making cities safe for women would be a step forward.
  • RicardusRicardus Shipmate
    Liverpool One bus station I've encountered in late December in the snow. I blame it for the resultant chest infection. All of us waiting for our delayed bus, juddering trying to find some shelter, any shelter, somewhere. It hasn't encouraged me to return to Liverpool since.

    If you take Merseyrail instead, you can experience Moorfields station - the only known underground railway station that you access by going up an escalator. No, it's not built into the side of a hill - you immediately go down again on another escalator or the lift.

    This was part of some brilliant 1970s scheme whereby the roads would be reserved exclusively for motor vehicles, and pedestrians would get round on elevated walkways on first-storey level. This never actually happened but Moorfields was nevertheless built with its passenger entrance above street-level in preparation for when it did.
  • EutychusEutychus Shipmate
    edited March 4
    Ricardus wrote: »
    No, it's not built into the side of a hill

    I was excited to visit, and indeed use, Arsenalna station in Kyiv, billed as the deepest underground station in the world. The escalators make the Picadilly line seem like cut-and-cover by comparison, but I was slightly disappointed to discover that Arsenalna achieves this feat precisely by the station being at the top of quite a local hill.
  • That reminds me of the time I reported the "failure" of the phone line in our student house one January (it turned out to be because the previous incumbents had cancelled it, but BT had taken until December to turn it off...) from a phone box on the cliff top in Herne Bay. The person at the other end of the line asked if I could do anything about the howling noise. I pointed out that their nice new phone box had a gap at the bottom with no glass in, and the wind blowing through was making the noise.

    I once walked two miles in pouring rain to a phone box on Skye only to discover that I couldn't make a phone call because the the cash box was full.
  • Eutychus wrote: »
    Ricardus wrote: »
    No, it's not built into the side of a hill

    I was excited to visit, and indeed use, Arsenalna station in Kyiv, billed as the deepest underground station in the world. The escalators make the Picadilly line seem like cut-and-cover by comparison, but I was slightly disappointed to discover that Arsenalna achieves this feat precisely by the station being at the top of quite a local hill.
    At least the advertisements on the escalators are vertical! In Budapest some of them are mounted parallel to the stairway which becomes very disorientating on a long run. https://tinyurl.com/85jzap9m
  • Ricardus wrote: »
    If you take Merseyrail instead, you can experience Moorfields station - the only known underground railway station that you access by going up an escalator.
    Greenford station in London has always been had access by an upwards escalator. However, although it's part of the so-called Underground, it's actually sited on an embankment or viaduct.

  • Fawkes CatFawkes Cat Shipmate
    Ricardus wrote: »

    If you take Merseyrail instead, you can experience Moorfields station - the only known underground railway station that you access by going up an escalator. No, it's not built into the side of a hill - you immediately go down again on another escalator or the lift.
    Greenford station in London has always been had access by an upwards escalator. However, although it's part of the so-called Underground, it's actually sited on an embankment or viaduct.

    In fairness I think @Ricardus was discussing underground stations rather than Underground stations. But if we're doing the Undergound then while Amersham has (IIRC) more or less level access to the platforms, you have to go up a pretty big hill to get to the station in the first place.

  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    At least the London Underground has escalators. The Paris Metro seems not to have heard of them.

    Anyway. We finally move into, after some years of delay, Important New Building. Accommodation is a little crowded because of course staff numbers have increased since the original design. Some of us are seated backs to windows, computer screens before us. There is no provision in said design for blinds. At one point, while the drawing board was revisited, we had a large parasol to lug about to baffle the sun's rays.

    Another feature was the floor heating vents which ran round the rooms in the gap between the desking and the walls/windows. Except the overcrowding forced us off our carpeted islands. My desk spanned the venting - though by this time the window to my right had a blind.

    Our light-related troubles were not shared by the next floor down, where there were windows, but the architect had thought it would be a jolly idea to build sections of wall in front of them.
  • The effing bastard architects never seem to get to work in the piles of shite they *design*, do they?

    Re stations - Greenford's approach was dictated by the topography, whereas that at Moorfields was surely dictated by the insanity of town *planners*...
  • Fawkes CatFawkes Cat Shipmate

    Re stations - Greenford's approach was dictated by the topography, whereas that at Moorfields was surely dictated by the insanity of town *planners*...

    I think 'insanity' is a little strong. The idea of separating pedestrians and motor traffic is good - but fails on first contact with reality because pedestrians have a tendency to go where they want, and not where they are told to go. There's also a rather more principled problem in that a plan to keep motor vehicles in the middle of Liverpool was perhaps not as well thought out as it should have been.

    But be that as it may, since the plan had already established that Liverpool should have walkways, building the station so that it would be accessible to the walkways was actually pretty sensible. But then the plan changed.

    At this point I hear the voices of a host of Shippies crying 'but why has the entrance not been brought back to ground level?' (at least, I think that's what I hear. Maybe it's actually 'Fawkes, why won't you belt up about Moorfields station?'). Simply because the main way from ticket hall to platforms is by escalator, which (naturally enough) runs up to the raised ticket hall. I am led to understand that it is not easy to make an escalator a little bit shorter to end at ground level: not only do you have to rebuild all the machinery, but the top end of the escalator is - horizontally - in a different place. This means you need to both spend a lot of money on re-engineering, and on relocating your ticket hall.

    TL:DR - for the moment Moorfields is stuck with its upstairs ticket hall.

  • Here is a picture, showing the booking office at first floor level, and the giant tube containing the escalators. https://tinyurl.com/fzrktph6
  • Leorning CnihtLeorning Cniht Shipmate
    edited March 4
    Fawkes Cat wrote: »
    I think 'insanity' is a little strong. The idea of separating pedestrians and motor traffic is good - but fails on first contact with reality because pedestrians have a tendency to go where they want, and not where they are told to go.

    ...and where they want to go tends to be a direct line between where they are and where they want to be. Plans that divert pedestrians on circuitous routes always fail. Plans where pedestrians get the direct route, and cars have to go around, tend to do better.



  • A local civic building where the community emergency response communication center is located in the basement next to a river that is known to flood the area. A building where I once worked, when constructed in order to save money did not plan any storage space, thus two meeting rooms that were very much needed were then used as closets.
  • Alan29Alan29 Shipmate
    A school where I taught that had a staffroom that could only accommodate a third of the staff at a time, and which contained the only two staff toilets in the building, one cubicle for men, the other for women. Morning break was basically spent queueing for the loo. Some teachers were inevitably late for the following lesson. The classrooms were designed without any storeage space for sets of books ... and obviously the staffroom was too small for them.
    It was a nightmare to work in.
  • MaryLouiseMaryLouise Purgatory Host, Epiphanies Host
    Interesting to observe the gender difference exhibited so far in comments about the glass floored room...men have treated it as an excuse for a joke, whereas for women it is a serious issue. Just illustrates how sometimes we really do seem to inhabit different worlds...

    @Gracious Rebel I'm coming back to this because so many design flaws indicate a degree of obliviousness about women's realities that is truly staggering.

    Public restrooms/toilets are designed as if men and women use them for the same basic purposes, except that women might apply cosmetics in a mirror after using the loo. Yet whenever I've travelled and used public toilets in shopping malls or airports, I've found young mothers in there changing babies' nappies or breastfeeding, because that is the only private or suitable place around. What is needed is a designated baby care room with change tables, wash basins and waste bins, as well as a lactation room and another baby care facility that allows men caring for babies or small female children to use (thinking of the number of times I've been approached by desperate fathers asking if I'd mind taking their toddler into a toilet with me).

    The other aspect, and this breaches a social taboo so I hope nobody gets freaked out, is menstruation: the majority of women bleed for one week every month most of their adult lives and have to conceal, contain and manage menstruation while negotiating public spaces and toilets in workplaces, malls, airports and train stations. If you have too few public toilets and no sealed waste disposal bins, how are women to deal with used sanitary towels? It is so obvious that those designing or budgeting for crowded public buildings don't think about, or want to cater for women or those involved with childcare.
  • CathscatsCathscats Shipmate
    This last point reminds me of my favourite public loo bugbear - which the men will know nothing about. That is the cubicles which were designed and built before anyone remembered that there should be a sealed bin in there as well, so that it is rammed in cheek-by-jowl with the loo and when you sit to "perform" your leg rests against it's sometimes not as clean as you would hope side...
  • Preach it sister!

    Fortunately this is illegal now, but back in the day John Lewis in Aberdeen prohibited breast feeding in its cafe, but provided a breast-feeding room. A very pretty breast feeding room, ideal for a woman with a baby, who wanted to breast feed surrounded by pretty rose-print wallpaper and pretty pink fabrics and day dream about fluffy clouds and unicorns whilst doing so.

    Unfortunately it hadn't occurred to them that many breast feeding women might also be accompanied by a toddler. Or, worse, two preschoolers. There was no room in the curtained off cubicles for an extra child. There was no room for a double buggy. There was no way to confine small people to their own curtained off sections, short of tieing them down or using handcuffs, if you were simultaneously clutching a baby to your breast.

    Someone designed that room, assuming that every child is an only child, and that no-one would ever have both a baby and a two year old.
  • CathscatsCathscats Shipmate
    Way past the edit deadline I see I used and it's when I mean an its. Can't believe I did that!
  • SparrowSparrow Shipmate
    Ricardus wrote: »
    I nominate Liverpool One Bus Station.

    The original bus station was an uninspired concrete block that was nevertheless fully enclosed from the elements. Then some genius had the idea of knocking it down and replacing it with this.

    Note the massive gap between the roof and what might charitably be called the 'walls'. Note that on the non-road side, there is a gap in the 'walls' between every other column. Note that the whole thing is perfectly aligned to the Irish Sea winds, the river being just out of sight at the far end of the picture. Note that some architect got paid to remove every possible advantage the old bus station had.

    (But it's so exciting! It's mildly asymmetric, and the roof curves a bit!)

    Never mind that most of the bus stops are further up the road with no shelter whatsoever.
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    Someone designed that room, assuming that every child is an only child, and that no-one would ever have both a baby and a two year old.

    Quite a lot of baby books are like that too. ‘Sleep when your baby sleeps’ is good advice, but not practical if you have toddler(s) around as well.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    edited March 5
    BroJames wrote: »
    Someone designed that room, assuming that every child is an only child, and that no-one would ever have both a baby and a two year old.

    Quite a lot of baby books are like that too. ‘Sleep when your baby sleeps’ is good advice, but not practical if you have toddler(s) around as well.

    Even when it's the first child; I had a feeling the police wouldn't be totally happy with my sleeping on the bit of dual carriageway between the roundabouts on the Chesterfield Bypass, which was about the only place boy #1 would sleep.
  • EutychusEutychus Shipmate
    So many mysteries eventually get cleared up years later.
  • MaryLouise wrote: »
    What is needed is a designated baby care room with change tables, wash basins and waste bins,

    In these parts, it's reasonably common now for both men's and women's toilets to have a fold-down baby changing table on a toilet wall. It would, I think, be unusual today for such a facility to only be installed in the women's toilet.

    I'm a big fan of parent-and-child toilet facilities in places where lots of toddler-sized people are likely to frequent: I'm sure every parent has played the exciting "take a couple of little children into the cubicle with you, balance them on your lap while you're using the facility ('cause there's no other space) and try not to let the toddler open the cubicle door while you're in mid-use game.

    Sealed bins for menstrual products have been in unisex toilets for as long as I can remember. Growing up as I did in a house full of boys, I had no first-hand experience of such items, and the rather coy wording in the toilet didn't provide much clarity. I spent a year or so of my childhood being a little concerned that maybe I was supposed to have put the toilet paper in the little bin.
  • MaryLouiseMaryLouise Purgatory Host, Epiphanies Host
    edited March 5
    @Learning Cniht, it may be reasonably common in major urban centres of the UK or US, but it isn't common in many other places in the West and certainly not in the developing world. As a broad generalisation, inadequate toilet arrangements and long queues with overflowing bins are still far too prevalent.
  • MaryLouise wrote: »
    @Learning Cniht, it may be reasonably common in major urban centres of the UK or US, but it isn't common in many other places in the West and certainly not in the developing world. As a broad generalisation, inadequate toilet arrangements and long queues with overflowing bins are still far too prevalent.

    Not just in major urban centres - even our ferries out here in the Hebrides have a separate, spacious baby changing room with toilet.
  • Then there are the idiot cubicle doors which brush the toilet bowl when you’re shutting them—because no one using a toilet has legs. And the fools who have projecting items in the space above your lap, whether those be bins or even in one memorable case, a full sink. Because nobody’s ever nine months pregnant...
  • ISTM that toilets should all be gender-neutral, and have plenty of space for the accommodation of knees, legs, Bumps, and children.

    It's not exactly rocket science, but I suppose that it might be difficult to retro-fit some of the older establishments. New or re-builds, OTOH...
  • Then there are the idiot cubicle doors which brush the toilet bowl when you’re shutting them—because no one using a toilet has legs.

    OK, this confuses me. How many people operate the toilet door whilst they're sitting on the toilet? You go in to the cubicle, stand to the side opposite the hinge, close the door, then disrobe and sit down. Leaving the cubicle reverses the process.
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