Trials of street urinals aim to prevent erosion

A urinal designed by Lacock Gullam to relieve Westminster City Council of the problem of people urinating in the street was launched last Friday.

Two urinals were unveiled in London’s Soho and may be followed by others if the year-long trial proves a success. They are intended to counter the problem of street urination, which is eroding the stonework of landmark buildings such as the National Gallery and upsetting local traders.

Lacock Gullam designed the stainless steel urinals for Swedish manufacturer Danfo. It was handed the work, worth a four-figure sum, without a pitch on the basis of previous work for Danfo.

The urinals will be open from 7pm to 8am. They are narrow to avoid obstructing pedestrians during the day, and the ‘stylish exterior’ is designed to draw attention to the facility, says Lacock Gullam principal Sam Gullam.

‘The doors’ pivoting action is like the wings of an insect, [which gave] rise to the project’s working title, The Butterfly’, Gullam says.

Westminster City Council councillor Judith Warner, responsible for environment and leisure, says the urinals are an additional facility and display information on where other toilets are located.

They are partially enclosed and are located in prominent places in an attempt to prevent the urinals being used for drug-taking or encourage muggings, Gullam adds.

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