Renovation of basic public toilets with aesthetics is often a hard-to-find concept. In a different understanding, Japan’s 16 leading designers just added their touch to public “toilets”, where people do not really prefer to spend much time in.
The Nippon Foundation has launched THE TOKYO TOILET project to build public toilets that can be used by anyone. The project will construct new toilets at 17 locations in Shibuya with 16 creators, Three of the toilets will be made available for use by the general public from August 5.
In addition to the construction of new public toilets, they also arranged for ongoing maintenance so that people will feel comfortable using these public toilets and foster a spirit of hospitality for the next person.
Three Creative Public toilets
Yoyogi Fukamachi Mini Park (1-54-1 Tomigaya)
Haru-no-Ogawa Community Park (5-68-1 Yoyogi)
Designed by: Shigeru Ban: There are two concerns with public toilets, especially those located in parks. The first is whether it is clean inside, and the second is that no one is secretly waiting inside. Using new technology, we made the outer walls with glass that becomes opaque when the lock is closed so that a person can check inside before entering. At night, they light up the parks like a beautiful lantern.
Ebisu Park (1-19-1 Ebisu-Nishi)
Designed by: Masamichi Katayama: In Japan, toilets originated with kawaya, huts built over rivers dating back to the prehistoric Jomon period. Trying to envision the appearance and atmosphere of these primitive kawaya, we built an “ambiguous space” that is simultaneously an object and a toilet by randomly combining 15 concrete walls. The spaces between the walls lead users into three different areas designed for men, women, and everyone. The design creates a unique relationship in which users are invited to interact with the facility as if they are playing with a curious piece of playground equipment.
The beige separators pave the way towards three different toilets: men, women, and unisex, welcoming all.
“The design creates a unique relationship in which users are invited to interact with the facility as if they are playing with a curious piece of playground equipment,” explains The Nippon Foundation.