Categorized | Bronx Neighborhoods

City Council Committee Moves Bill Forward that would Create New Public Restrooms

In a public hearing Tuesday, the Committee of Transportation and Infrastructure voted unanimously in favor of urging Mayor Eric Adams to start working towards increasing the number of public bathrooms in the city.

All 10 Committee members supported a bill that would create an agency dedicated to creating public restrooms in every zip code.

The lack of access to public restrooms is a critical problem to all New Yorkers, but “especially  “especially older New Yorkers, people with disabilities, delivery workers and cab drivers,.” said Committee Chair, Selvena N. Brooks-Powers (D – Queens.)

The majority of the city’s 1,100 public restrooms are in parks, which in a city with “nine million residents and millions more come to work or visit this is simply not enough,” Brooks-Powers said.

The bill proposes that the mayor create a new agency, which together with the Department of Parks and Recreation and the Department of Transportation, report on suitable locations for new restrooms city-wide, as well as report on the number of existing functioning bathrooms. The bill also requires the agencies to report on “accessibility and safety measures necessary for bathroom installation,” as well as identifying barriers and recommendations for overcoming them.

Council Member Rita C. Joseph, the main sponsor of the bill, said in a statement read by Brooks-Powers, that the use of zip codes will ensure that the possible locations for new public bathrooms “are distributed equally throughout the five boroughs.”

The bill will now be sent to the council for a vote. If it passes, the mayor has 30 days to sign or veto the bill.

The majority of the city’s 1100 public restrooms are in parks, the Committee of Transportation and Infrastructure wants to install more toilets in every zip code. Photo: New York City Department of Parks & Recreation

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