The dirty, smelly truth about our public toilets

The dirty, smelly truth about our public toilets
Community Newspaper Group / Aaron Short

Summer is here and people are out and about in the neighborhood for longer hours — which means the call of nature often beckons. Knowing where the nearest public restroom is located is critical for any urban explorer, but which ones are the cleanest?

We visited four of North Brooklyn’s busiest comfort stations, in the middle of the four largest parks in Williamsburg and Greenpoint, giving you the low-down on which bathroom is the cleanest.

McCarren Park
Overview: So disgusting that the Open Space Alliance had to hire additional staff to power wash and monitor them. The toilets appeared clean and the sinks worked, but the smell can be overpowering. Soap was present in the dispensers and an air dryer for wet hands worked well. The women’s room was in need of a good scrub to tame the cloacal fog from its stalls.
Grade: D+
Community Newspaper Group / Aaron Short

The results are not that shocking.

If venturing inside these four parks bathrooms, it is best that you hold your nose, use lots of toilet paper on the seat, and bring your own soap — or at least try not to touch anything while you are there.

McGolrick Park
Overview: A slightly acrid smell and some watery residue on the floor. The sink slightly backed up and an empty beer bottle rested next to the toilet stall. Liquid soap and paper towels were supplied. Troubling dark spots on the floor near the urinal in the men’s room.
Grade: B
Community Newspaper Group / Aaron Short

Here’s our report:

Sternberg Park
Overview: Newest and the largest of the bunch. Dispensers were empty and a bar of soap had worn down to bits. One men’s room toilet is broken and wrapped with a garbage bag to prevent use. Even the “stainless steel” urinals are soiled. Floors had barely any smell, but a good sweep would be helpful.
Grade: C+
Community Newspaper Group / Aaron Short