It’s a debate that touches all corners of the community: how to we reconsider restroom facilities to be more inclusive of people across the gender spectrum?
This June, a New York-based design initiative released a groundbreaking solution to the debate surrounding transgender access to public restrooms through the launch of their online website: Stalled!
Stalled! takes a refreshing look into the way the public interacts with bathrooms and how we use the space for a multitude of activities. In redesigning the architecture of the public bathroom, the concept imaginatively reconsiders the political economic and cultural implication of bathrooms not only for those in the transgender community, but for people of all ages, races, places on the spectrums of religion and gender — while also taking those with different abilities into account.
The architectural plan calls for a mixed space with three functional areas, each with dedicated facilities for their intended use. The outermost area is a grooming area that extends past the structure, allowing its guests to be welcomed into the space. The middle area is reserved for cleaning up in a way that’s uniquely designed to bridge the stalls and grooming area with plant décor. The innermost area is the area in which all-gender based bathrooms’ stalls are located. Overall the entire space is completely interlinked with no diving walls or doors to limit those depending on their needs. An perhaps most impressive of all, the initiative designed these open bathrooms not only to be installed into future structures, but exiting ones as well.
The Stalled! design initiative assembled a diverse research team comprised of renowned architect Joel Sanders, transgender historian Susan Striker, and legal scholar Terry Kogan. Together, they are providing a comprehensive and unique look into solving the often-contentious bathroom debate — at least from an architectural standpoint. Sanders, the architect of the initiative, is known for his previous work at the NYU Bobst Library Pixel Veil, Princeton Julian Street Library and the UPenn Institute of Contemporary Art (among other notable accomplishments).
While national and local legislators continue to grapple with less-comprehensive solutions to the public bathroom issue, Stalled! has managed to use ingenuity to provide an answer that addresses many of its inherent cultural, political and economic issues.
Last modified: January 22, 2019