Skytrain commuters wary of public washroom idea

Vancouver, BC, Canada / News Talk 980 CKNW | Vancouver's News. Vancouver's Talk

Many skytrain users are skeptical of the costs and safety associated with the possibility of public washrooms at sky train stations.

Opinion was split among commuters at the Granville sky train station May 21 as municipal politicians call for bathrooms at skytrain stations.

Many question how Translink would cover the operating costs .

“With the efficiency of service, and the budget that they’ve had and been running with, I don’t think it’s’ really that justified. They just keep increasing their fares without increasing service.”

“Do you really think we’ll get that out of Translink without increasing the fares some more”?

“Having a closed area like that in the subways, the propensity for violence and abuse is very high.”

“It’s always handy to have some public washrooms around, but I think it’s probably a maintenance concern and how much effort they are willing to put in.”

“So many times you have to wait to get home to use the bathroom after a long sky train ride, we definitely need it. We have it at the sea bus, why not the skytrain.”?

“No, drugs, sex, it has to be really studied carefully.”

Some say bathrooms are necessary to accommodate an aging population.

Translink says it’s not in the books right now, but could be in the future.


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  1. How long have we had this system without public washrooms? So, if they were needed. why weren’t they put in ‘day one’? You REALLY need them, turn them over to the private sector and make the users pay for ….. ‘er use. No cost to the taxpayer and if someone needs it, it’s there. Let those running the facilities cover the cost of policing and cleaning them. Maybe while they are at it you could tie in proof of a pass or payment of fare before you can even get in them. You would really have a pay and go system.

  2. Here we go the right wingers thinking again! Pay,Pay,Pay with you people it will not take long before we have to pay for the air we breath. They had pay toilets before and it was found to be offensive to charge money to relieve oneself,we have people out they that have medical emergencies ,like diabetes that when you have to pee you have to pee ,maybe that is why so many still drive to work! To not have a system with operating washrooms is barbaric and cruel with the long travel times for the riders, now we have come full circle with this user pay,do the poor or elderly end up crapping themselves to satisfy your pipedreams,of pay, pay ,pay,then make the private sector in charge of us going to the washroom. do the malls have people watching the washrooms all the time, No, they clean them and have security patrols, translink have plenty of security,they could call it the honey run!

    • Poor Ken – another evil “right winger” hiding under the bed. I glad to be accused of thinking anyway. That’s one step up from many.
      So, if one cares about how taxes are collected and spent, then one is automatically an evil “right winger”. If that’s what I have to be defined as, then I’m OK with that. But, instead of resorting to personal attacks (which is usually the tactic of the Progressive) stick to the issues. Putting a label out there doesn’t shut me up because I refuse to play that game. Call me what you will and once that’s off your chest, look at the issues.
      You mention washrooms in malls. May I remind you that they are their for the convenience of those using the facility; they are operated by those in the “free” enterprise system; they don’t have a bunch of mindless bureaucrats running them: and they don’t have overpaid public employees performing the day to day maintenance. FYI: You do pay for them. Every time you make a purchase part of that money is distributed from the merchant to the mall managers under common area costs (CAM, etc.).
      As for the driving – diabetes link: Don’t know of many cars that have a built-in loo? Probably takes about as much time to park and find somewhere to go as it does getting off the transit system to look for one (loo).
      If washrooms were provided ‘gratis’ on transit, you think you won’t be similarly paying for them through the fare box or your taxes? Nothing is “free” and it only usually becomes a lot less “free” once governments or their agents get involved.
      As for the elderly or those with medical conditions, we could always arrange for a pass of some sort so they don’t have to suffer unnecessarily. Most seasoned citizens (at least those that have lived here for many years) have already paid through the nose over their lifetime; you won’t hear an argument from me about giving them a break.
      As one of those evil “right wingers”, I expect (with few exceptions) everyone to pay. When it’s done through our taxes and government, do we ever pay and many times over! It is just one ‘heck’ of a lot cheaper in the long run when the money isn’t being filtered through government. Since when did we expect government to provide for us? The tax paying public is better served when the government role is generally restricted to oversight and let those that can do – do.
      Again I ask, the system has operated without these conveniences for how many years? Not saying they shouldn’t be there, just there are better ways than giving the task to those that have already shown to be grossly incompetent and careless with OUR money. Have a good day!

  3. saw an interesting pay for use public washroom in Prague, which self cleans after each use. I hope Translink investigates the option of a self cleaning public washroom which is subsidized or a small user fee charge, such as a twenty five cents per use.

  4. London, New York, Rome, and other subway systems all have public toilets in some form in some (not all) stations. I am a baby boomer (leading edge) and I do not take Skytrain for the very reason that there are no washrooms. All we need are a couple of decent ones – and self-cleaning is fine – at the main terminus stations like Broadway, Waterfront, Lougheed Mall, New Westminster, and Coquitlam. No need for one in every station. Pay as you go is definitely the best method. It is just plain BS that it is a complicated issue. I’m sure it is more that no Translink employee wants to be known as the “bathroom person!”