What Do You Think of These New Toilets in Portland, Maine?
We humans when you get down to it have just a handful of basic needs. One of them is needing a place to "go".
Like that time I downed a large iced coffee from Dunkin' driving my car full of friends down from the midcoast to the Old Port Fest years ago. Praise the Lord for porta-potties am I right?
Just last summer my hometown of Damariscotta opened some long-requested public restrooms. Lincoln County News reported that the restrooms were first officially requested by Reny's owner, John Reny back in the summer of 1994.
The ultimate goal being to make tourists comfortable. Many of the small businesses along Main Street do not have public restrooms leaving tourists to find alternative options at local chain fast-food restaurants or grocery stores.
While Damariscotta's primary concern was tourism, larger cities like Augusta and Portland also have a homeless population to contend with.
The City of Portland announced this week that two new public restrooms have opened. One at Fox Field and the other in Deering Oaks Park with one to open soon in the Eastern Prom area. Again this is a benefit to tourists but also for those who are homeless.
As per usual with anything that comes across the Facebook News Feed people have mixed feelings over the restrooms.
Some commenters noting that they've already witnessed multiple people sleeping in the restrooms. To which another commenter responded how sad it was that there are people who feel like sleeping in a public toilet is their best option for the night.
Others saying it will be another spot to gather used needles.
Some commenters said they hope the new additions will lessen incidents of using open public spaces, such as in front of King Middle School, to take care of business.
My thought? Everyone deserves a place to go. And no that does not mean these spaces are without risk. But unfortunately, nowhere is. Needles can be found in the grass in the park, on the sidewalk, in a parking garage. And yes, it is heartbreaking that fellow humans see a public toilet and think that is their best option to survive another night in the cold. I think the benefits outweigh any negatives.
What do you think? Do you think they're a good idea? Would you feel comfortable using one yourself if need be? Sound off through our app!