Elevating the Discourse: Public Toilets pt. 3

Composting Toilet, 2006

designer: Sheffield School of Architecture

location: Eccleshall Wood (UK)

Working with the city of Sheffield, a Sheffield School of Architecture’s MArch studio designed and constructed an awesome dry composting toilet in the nature preserve of Eccleshall Wood. This innovative privy uses no glue or metal fastenings. The stacked timbers create a stunning effect and allow lots of ventilation and illumination, though privacy may be a little lacking. This is an incredible play on the outhouse.

Flydalsjuvet Rasteplass, 2006

architect: 3RW arkitekter

location: Geiranger (NO)

Situated at the end of Geirangerfjord, this rest stop by 3RW may be one of the most interesting we’ve run across. The wooden shell is re-used timber from a dilapidated structure. The box is elevated on 5cm structural glazing, creating a fairly incredible effect from the interior. The color of the glazing is reminiscent of the cool hues of mountain lakes.  The layering of the wood works really well given the context of the fjord, and is a great re-purposing of materials. This project is yet another stunner built for the Nasjonale turistveger (National tourist routes). We could definitely use better designed (and functioning) toilets along our national routes!

Hereiane Rasteplass, 2006

architect: 3RW arkitekter

location: Jondal (NO)

Another small project completed by 3RW for the Nasjonale turistveger. This compact outhouse is located at the Hardangerfjord. The colored concrete adds a touch of frivolity and interest to passing cars. Exterior walls are slate, which is left rough on the interior.

Brookley Road Public Conveniences, 2004

architect: John Pardey Architect

location: Brockenhurst (UK)

John Pardey Architect have completed several interesting public conveniences, and we thought the form and layout of this one was the most noteworthy. The exterior is finished with stained timber and a zinc roof. The continuous skylight at the roof  is a great touch, and provides ample light to the interior. The entire facade is lifted off the ground to aid cleaning and provide ventilation. Both toilet rooms (for men and women, naturally) back up to a shared ‘pipe alley’, keeping plumbing away from bored teenagers. It is easy to see why this was a 2004 finalist for the Prime Minister’s Award for Better Public Building.

Safe Haven Bathhouse, 2009

foto: Pasi Aalto

foto: Pasi Aalto

foto: Pasi Aalto

architect: TYIN tegnestue

location: Ban Tha Song Yang (TH)

An elegant toilet and bathing structure for an orphanage in Thailand, this wooden project utilizes local materials and found objects in an incredible manner. The end result is a toilet better than most starchitects could even dream of. The concrete block boxes hold private spaces and provide a nice contrast to the bamboo screen. The total cost of this toilet was NOK22,500 (US$3,230) and was assembled in just over two weeks. TYIN tegnestue provides an excellent model of how simple projects combined with a little brainpower and elbow grease can significantly improve sanitary conditions in even the remotest of locations.


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