The world's 10 best public toilets for 2014

Trail Restroom

Design: Miro Rivera Architects

Location: Austin, Texas

Public toilet design Trail restroom Miro Rivera Architects

Picture: Paul Bardagjy

Designed by Miro Rivera Architects, the Trail Restroom on the banks of the Colorado River in Austin, Texas is both a public toilet and a sculpture that relates to and enhances the landscape that surrounds it.

Public toilet design Trail restroom Miro Rivera Architects

Picture: Paul Finkel/Piston Design

The toilet - the first public restroom built in the park in over 30 years - was built by the Town Lake Trail Foundation, a community-based non-profit organization, in partnership with the city's Parks and Recreation Department.

Public toilet design Trail restroom Miro Rivera Architects

Picture: Paul Finkel/Piston Design

The design was conceived as a sculpture in a park, a dynamic object along the active trails. It consists of 49 vertical Corten steel plates whose width and height vary significantly. The panels are arranged along a 'spine' that coils at one end to form the restroom walls. The plates are staggered in size to control views and to allow for the penetration of light and fresh air. Both the door and roof were fabricated from steel plates.

Public toilet design Trail restroom Miro Rivera Architects

Picture: Paul Finkel/Piston Design


Wembley WCs

Design: Gort Scott

Location: London

Public toilet design Wembley WCs Gort Scott

Picture: Gort Scott

Standing over five metres tall and with a stylish gold perforated metal facade, this stylish public toilet stands at the centre of a newly landscaped and pedestrianised area of Wembley, north London.

Public toilet design Wembley WCs Gort Scott

Picture: Gort Scott

The base of the building is made of concrete so that it stands up to the inevitable knocks and scrapes of heavy use. Above head-height the structure becomes a filigree, shiny metal screen, allowing for light and ventilation without letting views in.

Public toilet design Wembley WCs Gort Scott

Picture: Gort Scott

The perforated water-cut screen further creates the effect of a glowing lantern during the evening.


Public Toilets, Uster

Design: Gramazio & Kohler

Location: Uster, Switzerland

Public Toilets, Uster Gramazio & Kohler

Picture: © Gramazio & Kohler

This public toilet, developed for the city of Uster in 2011, is a prototype for a new typology of urban infrastructure which will be installed, in variations, at several places in the city over the next few years.

Public Toilets, Uster Gramazio & Kohler

Picture: © Gramazio & Kohler

The parametric design of its facade, consisting of folded, vertically-arranged coloured aluminium strips, can adapt to changing building sizes and shapes, as well as through its colour scheme, to the surrounding area. The depth of the folded structure and the varying reflective angle of the light on its facade, in combination with the slightly different colours of the single strips, generate a shimmering effect that changes depending on the sun as well as the observer's position.

Public Toilets, Uster Gramazio & Kohler

Picture: © Gramazio & Kohler

 

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