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DESIGN THESIS 2016 Project by Devanshi Mehra Sponsored by Foley designs Pvt. Ltd., Bangalore Property of Unitedworld Institute of Design Foley Designs Pvt. Ltd.


DESIGN THESIS, 2016 Unitedworld Institute of Design Student, Product Design (2012 - 2016) Devanshi Mehra Sponsored by Foley Designs Pvt. Ltd. Industry Guide Mr. Michael Foley Mr. Manas Barve Mr. Bavith Balakrishnan Institute Guide Prof. Kishori Dalwadi


PREFACE At UID, all the final year students are required to undertake a graduation project which is a six months long full scale design project in the industry. The student gains industry experience during the course of this project and builds his/her creative confidence to work as design professional. This experience gives the student an opportunity to learn about an organization’s work culture, management and other skills required by a designer to manage timeliness and pitch ideas, concepts to concerned colleagues and clients. The student experiences how a number of project are handled at a time, the progressive stages of a project and how a fitting solution is delivered to the client. While working on a real project in the industry, the student gets a chance to test his/her learnings and realize their strengths and weaknesses. My graduation project was sponsored by Foley Designs, in Bangalore for six months from February 2016 to July 2016.



ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The entire team at Foley Designs showed exceptional love and support throughout the six months that I spent with them. Their part and contribution was not just restricted to the office space and projects but extended to conversations and social support much beyond it. I am grateful to Michael Foley for giving me the opportunity to work with Foley designs and learn from the team, as well as for his feedback in the project and for the creative freedom that every employee at Foley designs has, which was extended to me as well during the internship. I am extremely thankful to Manas and Bavith, for their guidance and support throughout the project. I can’t thank Manas enough for taking out time in spite of his ruthless schedule and deadlines to give me feedback and help me through the different stages of the project. He inspired me not only through his work and process, but also the energy and ethics that he brings along. Bavith, for helping me through all my self doubts. His contribution in this period has been immense, sitting with me for hours to discuss technical details as well as my process and purpose when I was losing track of the project.  I hope I can someday do justice to the contributions made by both of them to this project and to me as a designer.  The entire Foley Designs team, became colleagues, mentors, friends and family for the entire time I spent with them. They made me a part of everything, from working on projects, to playing table tennis, friday night plans and so many other experiences. They have added to this experience in every way. I am grateful to Tanvi, Jesal, Varun, Gautham, Aditi, Alpa, Rohit and Sakhi, for making me a part of their social life like I was an old friend, for their contributions to the project, for the “big talk” sometimes, that made me reflect on things and for so much more that I can’t fit in here. Professor Kishori Dalwadi and Prof. Varshin Vala, for their guidance in deatiling and model making. Professor Sada Sivan and Prof. Kishori for their inputs in the document. Friends and co-interns in Banglore who inspired me in so many ways. Family and friends back home, for all the love. 







Aspirations Synopsis About Foley Designs About the Institute

10 12 14 16

Themes and insights





Client brief Project Approach and overview Timeline as planned Timeline as happened

20 22 24 26

Shift from Demeaning to Dignified profession Shift from Provision to Usability Shift from Facility to Civic Pride





Swachh Bharat Mission Understanding Public toilets Brainstorm Framing the Design challenge Research methodology

30 32 34 36 38

Incremental Solution Redefined brief Design principle Layout Form Identity Material Research


68 72 82

90 92 94 96 100 122


130 CONCEPT DETAILING Chosen materials Assembly Structure Details Final model Technical Drawings Reflections

132 138 150 156 168 181

182 WAY FORWARD Seminar Introduction Studying existing scenarios Survey preparation and findings Planning Public toilets Planning Bus stops Bibliography

184 186 188 190 196 198


INTRODUCTION This sections sets the background of the document, putting in place its purpose and context. Giving an overview of the sponsor company and personal expectations from the journey documented here. 




Introduction / Aspiration


ASPIRATION For my graduation project, I wanted to work with a multidisciplinary design consultancy and get a chance to work on, or at least observe the different processes followed in the varied projects. I was fortunate enough to land at Foley Designs, who are one of India’s most multifaceted design consultancies, working on a wide range of design applications with dedicated teams for communication design, product design and development as well as spatial design. I have documented this journey here, and I hope you will find something to take away from it.


Introduction / Synopsis


SYNOPSIS This project is a design proposal for ‘Pay and Use’ public toilets, in India, under Swachh Bharat Mission, for the private sector to provide these public utilities. The document contains the design process that went into arriving at the concepts.  The ideation was done without constraints to explore opportunities that could be built up on later. Proposing a detailed, feasible solution was the deliverable of this project.  Transforming the quality of provision of public toilets, followed by a transformation in people’s perception of them was a major focus of the project.  As a design thesis project, I wanted to explore new processes and ways of analysing and using information to derive at meaningful design solutions. 


Introduction / About Foley Designs


ABOUT FOLEY DESIGNS Michael Foley first made his mark with stunning, contemporary design that gave Titan Industries an aesthetic makeover. A design student from the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, he joined Titan Industries as a product designer.  In the latter half of 2006, Michael felt the need to move his work to a broader, more challenging platform, and the design studio, Foley Designs, was born. The studio specialises in product design, packaging, graphics, environment design, and brand identity, and consists of a team that is hand-picked by Michael, for design prowess, originality, and ability to translate consumer understanding into fresh, inviting design. Every design project at Foley Designs reflects inventive thinking, which is the hallmark of this studio. They have successfully delivered fresh and innovative experiences to their client. They develop and evolve these solutions into effective and feasible reality that creates meaningful engagement.  Foley designs is a design consultancy truly knit with love and built of people who share a passion for design. The work culture at the firm represented Michael Foley’s (founder) humility and passion for art and design. Creative freedom is highly valued and seeps down to every level of the firm, even to me as an intern. I was given all the liberty to decide my own route and process throughout. I have been lucky to have had mentors like Michael Foley, Manas Barve, senior industrial designer, and Bavith Balakrishnan, spatial designer at the firm. Reflecting back on it, I can’t thank them enough for the time and effort they invested in me.


Introduction / About UID


ABOUT UID Unitedworld Institute of Design (UID) is a private educational institute in India established in 2012 under Unitedworld group, which is presently operating in many business verticals, prominent of which are Education, FMCG, Textiles and Hospitality. Education is their major focus area & maximum thrust has been put into this endeavour. Unitedworld Group is committed towards qualitative education & excellence. UID is an institute of national repute that follows the philosophy “Have a passion to create something new & influence change�. The institute prepares students to understand the intrinsic values of design. The Institute of has nationally recognized faculties, teachers and equipment. They undertake to impart education that cultivates artistic capabilities and in-depth design knowledge to foster a creative education. It offers professional bachelor and masters courses in fields of fashion design, product design, lifestyle and accessory design, visual communication and interior design.


PROJECT OUTLINE This part frames the context of the project with brief explanation on the approach and process followed. I experienced a huge gap between the timeline as planned and as executed in this project, owing to various external factors as well as personal conflicts, which I intend to portray here with all honesty. 

Project Outline



European references sent by client Project Outline / Client brief


CLIENT BRIEF Design proposal for public Toilets with European design language.. • To have 3 urinals, 3WCs, 2-3 WBs and Mirrors. • Very basic fixtures/ hardware for mass public. • To have provisions for overhead tanks, bore well for water inlets, flushing • No use of exhaust, may be roof to have louvers for natural ventilation. • Waste bins • Storage space to be provided for cleaning tools. • Provision for only cold water- no need for hot water. • Easy to use - “only push” hardware for taps and flush • No need for tissue paper holder, hand dryer - theft an issue • To be well lit, Lighting to give a perception on cleanliness • MAINTENANCE- is a big concern. Should be maintenance friendly • Size_ 30ft x 10ft

This is a hypothetical client brief for practical constraints and targets the stakeholders for a pitch project. Its a design pitch for the private sector investors who wish to build public utilities such as public toilets in India under Swachh Bharat Mission.


PROCESS To analyze the vast data from research, I chose to follow IDEO’s Design KIT process. It helped me put my design challenge in human centered terms and connect the dots throughout the process.

My reference material for this process are the below mentioned publications:

Project Outline / Project overview and approach


PROJECT OVERVIEW AND APPROACH WHAT? Public toilets are meant for floating population i.e. for people on the move. They serve the needs of whoever happens to be passing by, whether a local or a stranger. The public toilets in this project address the PAY AND USE on-street conveniences rather than ‘off-street’ privately provided public toilets like those in malls, petrol pumps, cinemas etc.

WHY? Toilets meet vital user needs and have a huge impact on a nation’s health, as pointed out by Clara Greed in her book, Inclusive Urban Planning for toilet Design. When it comes to public toilets, they are often perceived as dirty, stinking spaces. The facilities are often poorly maintained and user studies have shown that they are the last resort for users after restaurants, cafes, pubs etc.

HOW? After receiving the brief and further discussions in the company, we decided to approach the project to come up with an incremental proposal, that is easily viable, feasible and hence acceptable by the client, keeping intact the basic functionality, with little interventions in detailing and strong identity of the toilet block, to transform the perception and experience of users towards public toilet.  As Clara Greed puts in her book, Inclusive Urban Planning for toilet Design, “Toilets are culture”, that differs from place to place and from community to community. Its hard to deviate people from their culture or force them to adopt a new one, which meant that the toilet design had to satisfy the toilet culture(s) prevalent in India.  As an obvious observation that is pointed out in so many debates, “the challenge is not building toilets, but maintaining them.”. The client clearly mentions this concern in his brief as well. With that concern in mind, I went to explore and understand the nuances responsible for the poor maintenance of these utilities and pointing out potential sub-systems that could be tapped into, to bring about a gradual but solid impact in the system and culture of using and maintaining public toilets.  23


Project Outline / Timeline (as planned)







Initial Research

Past experiences / System thinking

System overview

Instant ideas, opportunities / problems, Approx. timeline

Environment study geography, demography, psychology Market research Secondary research ( Internet )

Other short projects User research



Synthesis, Ideation and Redefining brief

Extensive Research

Data categorization - inferences, problems, opportunities

Studying sub systems

Scenario building Problem statement, target audience, design criteria, Scope, Redefine Timeline

Extensive market research

User Research

Form Identity It

Brainstormin Generating moo inspiration boa

Sketching and fidelity modeling / prototyping

Shortlisting ide

Defining desig direction




Brief Discription of Methodology Planning the research, brainstorming on the scope and the dept of the research. Also, recording past experiences regarding the subjects in he brief.

Based on the scope, projecting the functioning of the system and carrying out relevant field research, secondary research and recording interviews of the commuters

Project Outline / Timeline (as executed)

Organizing the data into themes and separating major insights from observations and picking out opportunity statements for ideation. Based on these redefining the client brief

After brief generation, revisiting the prime sites to verify themes and insights while keeping myself open for more information.

Taking reference secondary research experiences for ex new forms and id visual identity with of skectching and lo modeling.






ng, od / ard

Shortlisting Concepts

New system infographics

Way forward

low / Rapid g

Concept detailing , high fidelity modeling

Testing of Ideas

Feedback / reviews, Improvisation

Model Making





es from h and past xploring deas for h the help ow fidelity .



Selecting the ideas and forms showing potential by taking feedbacks. After that, developing concepts by combining and iterating on different ideas. The next part was figuring out the details for the selected concepts.




Finalizing the details for the selected concept by prototyping and testing of ideas and also after talking a number of experts from relevant fields. Making a scaled model of the final design for a proper communication of the concept,

Working on the conference for “women safe Women smart cities� Developing concepts for Ahmedabad and documenting the entire work.

These were the major steps where the process was delayed. A lot of details were figured out after coming back from the internship, with internal mentors and a few other experts. The model making took a lot more time than expected. Working with Prof. Minal Patel, on the conference for the National consultative Seminar, took around 15-20 days of November.


DISCOVER This part outlines the initial understanding of the design challenge and stakeholders, along with research planning and methodology.Â





INTRODUCTION On October 2, 2014, to commemorate Mahatma Gandhi’s birth anniversary, Prime Minister, Narendra Modi inaugurated the Swachh Bharath Mission, or the Clean India Mission. Unlike the earlier state programmes, it recognizes that “availability” does not guarantee “acceptability”. The central objective of the mission is to eliminate open defecation in India by 2019. The target is to transform villages and cities into “open defecation-free” communities, meaning they demonstrate: toilet access, toilet use and toilet technology that keeps both people and the environment safe. The programme invests in capacity building in the form of trained personnel, financial incentives and systems for planning and monitoring to ensure behavioural change. By Public Toilets, it is implied that these are to be provided for the floating population / general public in places such as markets, train stations, tourist places, near office complexes, or other public areas where there are considerable number of people passing by. Care should be taken to ensure that these facilities have adequate provision for men, women and facilities for the disabled (e.g. ramp provision, braille signage, etc.) wherever necessary.

Discover / Swachh Bharat Mission




Toilet blocks owned and maintained by municipal agencies. Usually no charge is levied on the users. they are becoming rarer as cleanliness and maintenance are generally poor, there being no real obligation or incentive for caretakers to provide a good service.


Toilet blocks using municipal funds, but operated by NGOs, private contractors or individuals who are responsible for routine maintenance and charge user fees. The municipality may provide water and power supplies free of charge and / or retain responsibility for structural repairs. The NGO, Sulabh International operates a huge number of Pay-and-use toilets on this basis.

The design pitch in this project addresses clients adopting either of the Private models.


Toilet blocks funded, constructed, operated and maintained by the private sector, usually on land provided by the municipality. User fees apply. Under build, operate and transfer contracts, ownership of the premises transfer to the municipality when the lease period expires, typically after five or seven years.



MOBILE / PORTABLE TOILETS These can be put in place where and when needed, e.g. for a festival. In this sense, it is a temporary outdoor enclosure which can either be connected to the local sewage system, or store the waste in a holding tank to be emptied by a vacuum truck. They are usually free of charge and can used by anybody attending the event.

PERMANENT STAND ALONE TOILETS (PAY AND USE) They are often installed and maintained by private firms, without requiring funds from the municipal budget. These facilities are usually automated and do require an attendant.

PERMANENT TOILET BLOCKS (PAY AND USE) These are small buildings containing a number of toilets and commonly separated into male and female facilities. Attended by a janitor who is also responsible for collecting charges from the users of these facilities.

OFF STREET CONVENIENCES PERMANENT TOILETS These are facilities build in malls, cafes, restaurants, railway stations etc. Entry to these facilities is restricated by physical barriers and therefore, not truly public.

Discover / Understanding Public toilets


UNDERSTANDING PUBLIC TOILETS WHAT ARE PUBLIC TOILETS? A public toilet is a room or small building containing one or more toilets (and possibly also urinals) which is available for use by the general public or the floating population i.e. for people on the move. They serve the needs of whoever happens to be passing by, whether a local or a stranger. They are usually provided in places such as markets, train stations, tourist places, near office complexes, or other public areas where there are considerable number of people passing by. Public toilets may be provided by the local authority or by a commercial business. They may be unattended or be staffed by a janitor or attendant (possibly with a separate room).

This project targets on-street Pay and Use toilets blocks, monitored and maintained by an appointed attended.


What do we know? • Most public toilets are poorly maintained. • Middle class to higher income groups dread using public toilets. • Public toilets are the last resort for majority of the people • The word “public toilets”, prompts “stink” and are tabooed • The job of cleaning toilets severely lacks dignity of labor and looked down upon, engaging people

with very low income groups. • People cleaning toilets are perceived to be unclean and in many communities, “untouchables”. • Higher income groups care about hygiene and the diverse and unknown user group, leads them to avoid using public toilets.




Assumptions to test • The janitor does not do his job responsibly, because it is considered to be of low dignity and goes poorly appreciated or rewarded. • Higher income groups never / rarely use public toilets and the facility holds little importance for them.

Discover / Brainstorm

• Low income groups do not care about hygiene and are okay with using poorly maintained facilities.



What do we not know?




• What are the major factors responsible for the poor maintenance of these facilities? (Politics? Culture? or social behaviour? Attitude of the labour?) • How can we improve the situation? • Where does the potential of transformation lie? • Importance and impact of aesthetics on people who are dependent on the facility and regularly use it for their daily business. • Technical knowledge of materials and fixtures and what works best in theory?


Discover / Framing the design challenge


FRAMING THE DESIGN CHALLENGE What is the problem that we are trying to solve? Designing pre-fabricated, low maintenance, reliable onstreet public toilets. What is the ultimate impact that we are trying to have? Reliable sanitation conveniences around the city. What are the possible solutions to the problem? Self-cleaning toilets Systems in place for regular check and maintenance of existing facilities. Low maintenance toilets Training for efficiently cleaning public toilets. Context and constraints Management / owner and the appointed caretaker of the facility has a critical role in maintaining these facilities. Solution should work across different cities. Prefabrication to facilitate assembly of the structure within a week. Minimal technology intervention / avoid using hi-tech systems.

How can we design easy-to-install, reliable public toilets around the city? How can we make the experience of using a public toilet, pleasant?



LEARNING FROM PEOPLE Individual Interviews Conducted with the attendants and users of public toilets to gain a better understanding of their perspective. Field Research / In-context immersion Visiting different toilets and speakign to the attendants as well as observing their behaviour helped take insights from their actions. Online User survey A online survey was floated to verify certain assumptions about users’ priorities, concerns and perspectives. Expert Interviews Talking to an expert from CISTUP (Urban Planning) for macro level insights about how decisions at government level affect the availability and maintenance of these facilities. Meeting with Mr. Muthu Raj from Enable India to understand the plight of the differently abled when it comes to toilet provision. Opinions and feedback from an established designer, Mr. Rajesh Mistry on how spaces and aesthetics affect people’s perceptions.

Discover / Research methodology


RESEARCH METHODOLOGY QUALITATIVE RESEARCH Qualitative research was done to understand people’s social, economic, and cultural backgrounds and to gain a deeper understanding of the problem and people’s behaviour and reasons behind them. In later phases of the design process, quantitative research becomes a good complement to understand, for example, the potential adoption of a new solution or to understand how the effect of solutions will vary from region to region.



Studying existing literature and other Internet sources. Clara Greed’s Inclusive Urban Design: Public Toilets especially has been a very helpful source to verify certain insights gained from primary research as well as for certain guidelines regarding users’ behaviour and provision of facilities.

Studying similar behavior / activities in different contexts



Sulabh Shauchalya at St.Marks Road

Sulabh Shauchalya at MG road

Portable toilets near M. Chinnaswamy Stadium

Cubbon Park Discover / Research Methodology / Field research in Bangalore

Nirmala toilets at bus stand near Hudson Circle

Cubbon Park


Cubbon Park

Toilet Comm 40

Toilets at Shivajinagar Bus stand

Toilets at Majestic Bus stand

E-toilet in Kormangala

anagar Metro station

t block at mercial street

Chikpet 41

SYNTHESIS In this section, all the research is put into themes to make sense of all that I learned from the design research, organizing all the stories and information into categories by finding similarities, differences and relationships between things. Themes then became the headlines for clusters of similar learnings. In the next step, I articulated meaningful and actionable insights from raw observations and conversations and placed them under these themes. Questions from these insights generated exciting design opportunities that formed the basis for ideation.





What are your major concerns while using a public toilet?

“I clean them everyday. For damages, I only have to inform the guy when he comes to collect the day’s collection from me in the evening, then they send a person to take care pf it within a couple of days. There was a bathing unit for women, but we converted into a store room. Some women still come and bathe in the toilets.”

“Its a long and tedious process to report damages, so I do everything myself, cleaning them and fixing plumbing and everything. They don’t come regularly to collect revenue. Only sometimes, once a month. But there’s no regularity.”

Conversation with the attendant, privately owned and maintained toilets at Cubbon Park, 26 years

“I have had to hold on for long hours as most of the public toilets are not even

flushed out for the next person to use so I often end up at the hotel to go to a rest room.” Working lady (user), 45 years

Conversation with the attendant, Shivajinagar Bus stand, 38 years

Synthesis / Cleanliness and maintenance




Clean toilets are the key to a user’s experience of using a public toilet.

How can we build hygienic public toilets for all user groups?

Dignity and accountability of the janitor are important factors in driving the maintenance of these facilities.

How might we build toilets that are always clean for the next user?

Maintenance is the hardest part due to the diverse, unknown group of users. Wet floors are a major turn off for the users. Corners and crevices collect dirt and are often spots used for spitting. Due to hygiene concerns, users avoid touching things in pubic toilets. Hence, contact points in the system should be minimized. Odors plays a vital role in people’s perception of cleanliness.  An effective system for reporting damage and prompt service are crucial for long term maintenance. A lot of people from low income groups bathe in these facilities, leaving the toilets wet for the next user. 

How can we design toilets that are easy to clean, maintain and service? Can we train and educate the attendant on efficient cleaning and its importance? How might we maximize light and ventilation in the toilets? Opportunity for bathing facilities for low income groups. Can we have an agency of well trained professionals for cleaning and maintenance of such public conveniences? 45

RELIABILITY FROM PEOPLE “When I really have to go, like while traveling, I usually send someone to check if they are clean or I go and check for myself. If they are decent, I go.” Poornima, working woman, 45 years

“Usually I don’t use public toilets. But, since I used Sulabh Shauchalya in Delhi once or twice, which were quite decent, I realized I could rely on them. Now, if I am ever on the road and need to go, if I see a Sulabh Shauchalya nearby, I just go.”

Availability (Its a great relief to just be aware of availability around when You are out) and Cleanliness (Icing on the cake) are 2 extremely important things. If that’s cracked... its sorted! Working woman (response from online survey)

Aditi, Spatial designer

Where all have you used a public toilet?

3.7% 18.5%

Use them whenever they are out depending on how clean the facility is


Use public toilets only when other options (like cafes, restaurants, hotels, pubs etc) are not available

Synthesis / Reliability

Use public toilets very often

How often do you use public toilets and when?




The type of users and their frequency is largely dependent on the location and surroundings of the public toilet.

How can we encourage more people to use public toilets whenever they are out?

The first / initial experiences of a facility drives the user’s reliability towards it.  Availability of reliable public toilet facilities are a relief and empowers people to travel around the city without stressing about their sanitation needs.  On-street pubic toilets are the last resort (in absence of no other choice) for users of higher income groups. Travelers are highly dependent on public toilets due to limited options and time.

How can we build reliable sanitation conveniences around the city? How can we empower people to move around the city without worrying about their sanitation needs? How can we promote tourism through public toilets?



“Whenever anybody says public toilets, our first reaction is to hold our noses. It just reminds us of how they stink, doesnt it?”  Snehal, working male, 42 years 

“I never use public toilets. I just have this perception that they are never clean and very unhygienic.” Chinamayi, working woman, 28 years

EXPERT’S VIEW “Aesthetics are important and can go a long way in impacting perceptions. They are not a given. In my own experience. I once designed a retail store for client. It wasn’t a huge brand or anything, but the aesthetics were so strong and beautifully done that the customers thought that it was the kind of shop where they couldn’t bargain. It worked very well for the client as they started receiving a more sophisticated audience in their store.” Rajendra Mistry, Industrial Designer

SECONDARY SOURCE An impression that the toilet ‘belongs’ to the community and is under surveillance will improve the situation. A nation’s image is judged by its toilets as they are often the first thing that tourists see when traveling to a country. Adequate public toilets will increase tourism and benefit the whole economy. Source: Inclusive Urban Design: Public Toilets by Clara Greed

Synthesis / Perception




A lot of people completely avoid using these facilities due to preconceived notions of stinking and unhygienic public toilets.

How can we design toilets that to connect with the community and instill a sense of belonging?

Surroundings of the facility is crucial to people’s perception of how clean and reliable they are. Aesthetics can have a powerful impact on perception and behavior of the users. Odors plays a vital role in people’s perception of cleanliness.  A property is respected when perceived to be monitored and well kept.

How can we remove the taboo associated with public toilets? How can we change the perception of high income groups towards public toilets? How can we make the experience of a public toilet pleasant?


LOCATION AND LAYOUT OBSERVATIONS The toilet in Cubbon park near the city court, and visited by lawyers, clients, people visiting the park and passers by. The Sulabh Shauchalya at the complex was mostly used by shopkeepers and customers visiting there. At majestic bus stand - Heavy footfall due to location. Used regularly by the waiting commuters, bus conductors, bus drivers and passers by and the policemen.

EXPERT’S VIEW “Provision of such facilities (public toilets) are a huge challenge in a country like India. Nothing works. It would be much easier and sustainable if the different tires and departments of government could coordinate and cooperate with each other. For example, if the people making toilets could coordinate with the planning commission, these facilities can directly use water from the existing borewells in public spaces like in parks, gardens etc and they don’t need to dig another borewell on their own. Unfortunately, coordinating with the government is a long and tedious process that nobody wants to go through.” Expert from CISTUP, ISSE

SECONDARY SOURCE DISTRIBUTION OF FACILITIES When developing guidance on the location, distribution and design of public toilets, it is vital to see the problem in terms of a hierarchy of levels of provision ranging, for example, from supplying large facilities in central locations serving large numbers of people converging on the main transport termini; to the distribution of a strategic sprinkling of smaller facilities in local neighbourhood centres serving a smaller catchment area; and ‘down’ to the installation of indi- vidual facilities in less frequented areas where nonetheless the passing motorist or walker might desperately need a toilet. Source: Inclusive Urban Design: Public Toilets by Clara Greed

Synthesis / Location and layout




The kind of people using and relying on a public toilet depends upon its location and surroundings.

How can we ensure proper planning and distribution of public toilets?

Proper distribution of public toilets increases people’s reliability on them. The maintenance of a public toilet is also dependent on people living and working nearby. The visibility of a toilet is crucial and determined by its location.

How can we increase the visibility of a public toilet? How can we design the layout of a toilet to best suit the users and the attendant?

The layout should enable the attendant to carry out his duties efficiently. The structure should be surrounded with low vegetation instead of tall trees and plants blocking its visibility.



A toilet block is built and maintained by a private agency

Scenario 1

Shiva, 24 years

An attendant is appointed for its upkeep

His duties are: Cleaning and maintenance

Scenario 2

Balbeer, 38 years

Revenue collection Keeping a check on vandalism Opening and closing on time Reporting damage and repairs

Synthesis / Dignity and accountability of labour



The toilet is located in Cubbon park - open surroundings with a room for the janitor. The janitor is a young man, Shiva, from a low income family in Bihar, who has come to Bangalore in search of a job. He comes across this job and takes it up because he is uneducated with limited skills and the salary satisfies his expectation.

The toilet is located at Shivajinagar Bus Stop.

The janitor is a middle aged man, Balbeer, from a low income local family. He has been working there for a long time.

Perks of the job and authorities’ behaviour

Attendant’s behaviour and aspirations

• Accommodation - a room in the toilet block in Cubbon Park that he has now started sharing with another friend.

He works honestly and keeps the toilets clean and maintained. He also allows his friend, who studies in a nearby college and some other students (mostly, from low income groups), to use the facility for free.

• A salary of 6000/- per month • And incentives at the end of everyday if the collection goes above 300/-, by the person who has come to collect the revenue.

This adds accountability to his job and keeps him motivated to keep the toilet clean.

He gets a monthly salary and due to the irregularity of checks or visits from authority to collect revenue, he probably gets to keep a huge percentage of the revenue for himself and the authority also probably does not wish to earn from the facility and has highly neglected it.

Although the job satisfies his monetary expectation or he has stuck to it due to lack of better job opportunities, he in unhappy as the job fails to dignify him in the society.

Balbeer maintains the toilets himself and even repairs most of the things as it is a long and tedious process to report damages and the authority has failed to send a professional on time in the past. This means that he would have to pay from his pocket to get call a plumber or any other concerned professional or to replace fixtures. This is the major reason for the poor condition of the facilities.




“These toilets were built by the government but the tender for maintenance has been given to some private agency. But its a long and tedious process to report damages, so I do everything myself, cleaning them and fixing plumbing and everything.”

The tedious process of reporting damages meant that the janitor would end up paying for repairs when there was no response from the authority, which led to him to do the repairs himself (instead of calling a professional), leading to the poor condition of the toilets.

“They don’t come regularly to collect revenue. Only sometimes, once a month. But there’s no regularity.” “These (pointing at accessible toilets) have been closed because nobody used them. If somebody with a disability comes now, which is rare, they use the regular toilets.“ Conversation with the caretaker of public toilet, Shivajinagar Bus stand

“I get a place to live, and a salary of Rs.6000/- per month and incentives everyday for any collection above Rs.300/-, for other expenses.” Conversation with the caretaker of public toilet, Cubbon Park

Synthesis / Location and layout




The caretaker / janitor is motivated to keep the toilets clean when he is held accountable.

How can we change people’s perceptions towards the job of cleaning toilets?

Well being of a toilet depends on the system in place for reporting damage and prompt service.  Irrespective of the pay and incentives, the job of a janitor fails to bring a sense of dignity. The job does not keep one engaged enough throughout the day, leading the janitor to take breaks by engaging in other activities like carrying out personal tasks, chatting with acquaintances around, etc.

How can we transform this into a more mainstream profession? How can we empower attendants to lead a dignified life?


ACCESSIBILITY The quality of being easily reached, entered, or used by people who have a disability

WHO ALL ARE ENTITLED TO USING ACCESSIBLE TOILETS? Disability includes a wide range of conditions: it covers more than the obvious such as blindness or confinement to a wheelchair. Breathlessness, pain, the need to walk with a stick, difficulty in gripping because of paralysis or arthritis, lack of physical coordination, partial sight, deafness and pregnancy can all affect a person’s mobility in the environment. Access for the disabled will also benefit parents with buggies and the elderly.

FROM PEOPLE “These (pointing at accessible toilets) have been closed because nobody used them. If somebody with a disability comes now, which is rare, they use the regular toilets.“ Attendant, Shivajinagar Bus stand toilets, male, 38 years

Accessible toilets are needed everywhere, train, Hotels and resorts. Even when I go for a overnight stay on a picnic, I find it very difficult to use the toilets in the resorts, bus stands, and gardens. Response from user survey, Working male with Cerebral Palsy, 26 years

EXPERT’S VIEW “Accessible environments are made with very little thought and most often things are done for the sake of publicity. An example is putting up braille signs at a railway station. There’s no guide for the visually impaired to reach to the sign and they forget that even the differently abled do not want to touch things in a public space.” Muthu Raj, Guide for accessible environments at Enable India, Bangalore

Synthesis / Accessibility


RHOK (Random Hacks of Kindness) Hackathon, where I got the opportunity to discuss the problem of accessible toilets with Muthu Raj



There is a serious lack of accessible facilities for the differently abled and the elderly.

How can we design reliable accessible toilets?

Often in spite of the facilities being part of the plan, they are either not built at all or shut down and converted for alternate use such as store rooms, due to less number of users and high maintenance.

How can we ensure the maintenance of accessible toilets?

Using a toilet is a very personal activity, making it difficult for the differently abled to ask for assistance as they do in many other scenarios. The facilities go unused as they are often inadequately built in terms of space provision and fixtures.


INFORMATION COMMUNICATION Communication is the act of conveying intended meanings from one entity or group to another through the use of mutually understood signs and semiotic rules.

FROM PEOPLE “I was once using this toilet, and I couldn’t figure out where to flush from. After a while I realized that it was a foot flush “ Michael, designer

“Sometimes, at concerts or even at hukka bars, I have seen signs which are just weird symbols and it can get quite confusing and embarrassing.”

“The other day I saw this sign pointing towards public toilets near the crossroads, which was just a paper stuck to the pole and it kept flying up and down. How is anybody supposed them out?” Minal, architect

Saakshi (user) 22 years

Synthesis / Information Communication




Different facilities have different revenue models and user charges, depending on the authority responsible for maintenance, leading to disputes between attendants and users in absence of clearly mentioned charges.

How can we increase accessibility of public toilets through information communication?

Appropriate steps and directions should be mentioned if a new technology or system is introduced.  Signs to discourage certain behaviours (like spitting, vandalism etc) do not work if the toilets are not maintained and properly monitored.  Clear wayfinders should be placed to find public toilets in crowded areas.

Can we use information communication to engage users while using the facility? How can we use signage to bring behavioural change? Can we transform perceptions through communication design?



FROM PEOPLE “I don’t remember the last time I used a public toilet. Maybe long back at a petrol pump while traveling. I always prefer to control and I can control for a very long time. They are just dirty and stinking with water dripping everywhere” Priti, working female, 44 years

SECONDARY SOURCE Women visit the toilet more frequently because of pregnancy, periods and cystitis; to check on worries about vaginal discharge (or to check ‘constantly’ on one’s ‘whites’ if one is using natural birth control to determine fertile days), and simply to check if one’s knickers (pants) or tights are about to fall down, or if one’s period has actually started; because they feel ill, breastfeeding (as a last resort) or to assist the elderly, children and disabled people. All these uses and visits require good ‘access’, lots of public toilets, plenty of internal space and a welcoming atmosphere. This is quite a different agenda from the cultural priorities dominating male toilets, which appear chiefly concerned with creating a ‘fortress’, defended against drugs, vandalism, cottaging and criminal activity. Source: Inclusive Urban Design: Public Toilets by Clara Greed

Synthesis / Women’s needs




Women need privacy to adjust their clothes and make up before leaving the toilet.

How can we encourage more women to use public toilets?

Most women would like to use western style toilets for comfort, but choose to use an Indian style toilet in public spaces due to hygiene issues. (Choosing Hygiene over comfort)

How can build public toilets that are safe and sufficient for women users?

Women prefer an individual dustbin in the cubicle to dispose sanitary napkins and are forced to flush it down in the absence of it as they feel embarrassed or conscious in front of others. Women are bound to dispose off used sanitary napkins without wrapping in case of emergencies and unavailability of required material, causing hygiene issues. Female users are more cautious than men about using public toilets, due to the biological differences.

Can we use public toilets as a tool to educate women from lower income groups about the importance and of hygiene and sanitation and improve their health? How can design public toilets to empower women to be more mobile? Can we bring a shift from usage of cloth (which unhygienic due to reuse of the same material) to sanitary pads(disposable and more hygienic) among women from low income groups? 61

INTERACTION WITH SANITARYWARE FROM PEOPLE “I prefer western seats in public toilets because even if somebody hasn’t flushed, I can still manage, but looking at that in Indian toilets is just disgusting.” Response from user survey


11.1% No



Yes Would you prefer a foot flush to the hand push ones?

Exploring the opportunity for a foot flush through user survey

Synthesis / Interaction with sanitaryware




Most women would like to use western style toilets, but choose to use an Indian style toilet in public spaces due to hygiene issues and the poor condition of the toilets seats.

Opportunity for testing foot flushing system in India

Locks are the most fragile fixtures and need to be replaced very frequently. People perceive white ceramic sanitaryware to be cleaner than steel. Back to back flushing is a major inconvenience for users as they have to wait for the tank to be refiled.

How can we minimize the contact points for users in a public toilet? What interventions can make fixtures safe and hygienic?

Adequate shelves for users’ belongings are important and the lack of them leads to disputes between the attendant and users if the user’s belongings are damaged or misplaced.


SUSTAINABILITY Able to be maintained at a certain rate or level Conserving an ecological balance by avoiding depletion of natural resources

FROM PEOPLE “There are no water problems here, but there is no overhead tank and everything is directly connected to the borewell. So, if the electricity goes out, the flushes don’t work.” Conversation with attendant of public toilet, Cubbon Park

Synthesis / Sustainability




Advertising is the most common and effective method of revenue sustainability for maintenance of such public facilities.

How might we maximize natural light and ventilation in the toilets?

Prompt service and installing robust fixtures is crucial for sustainability to avoid wastage of resources such as water leaking through broken pipes / taps.

How can we optimize water usage and tamper resistant plumbing system?

Due to high risks of vandalism, natural light and ventilation is maximized.

Provision for rainwater harvesting and solar power.

Natural Ventilation works better than inducing artificial smells. (Insight from Inclusive urban design)

Plumbing installation that is easy to service and hard to tamper with? Can the toilets become energy producers?


IDEATION For Ideation, I have defined certain Shifts. Shifts are fundamental changes in an individual’s or a society’s view of things. Putting ideas under these shifts has helped me define the kind of transformation that an idea can bring about and see it in a bigger picture. Certain ideas are mash ups here, that is taking up two existing brands or concepts to explore new ideas.




Shift from DEMEANING to DIGNIFIED PROFESSION The attendant is responsible for cleaning the toilets, collection of revenue and several other duties as mentioned in the research and its important to increase job satisfaction and dignity here as cleaning toilets is seen as an undignified, shallow job in India, going back to the times of manual scavenging by the untouchables in rural areas. There has to be a transformation in society’s perception of the job to make it a mainstream, dignified profession.

Ideation / Shift from demeaning to dignified profession



What can be the UBER of public toilets? The job of driving cabs in India was not as dignified and rewarding as it has become today with the coming in of centralized services like UBER, OLA etc. The customer feedback and respective incentives to the driver, keeps him motivated to improve service quality. The occupation has become more mainstream, elevating the lifestyle of the drivers as well.

Motivation and job satisfaction

Increased customer satisfaction


Increased rewards

How can we educate the attendants like STARBUCKS? Starbucks—like a handful of other companies—has succeeded in teaching the kind of life skills that schools, families, and communities have failed to provide. With more than 137,000 current employees and more than one million alumni, Starbucks is now, in a sense, one of the nation’s largest educators. All of those employees, in their first year alone, spent at least fifty hours in Starbucks classrooms, and dozens more at home with Starbucks’ workbooks and talking to the Starbucks mentors assigned to them. The program is sufficiently structured to earn college credits by completing the modules. Excerpt From: Charles Duhigg. “The Power of Habit.”

Ideation / Shift from demeaning to dignified profession / ideas



Agency X

Central agency that hires and trains the attendants in cleaning and management skills for a space as well as life skills, to grow personally. People from low income group get a chance to acquire skills and education through this.

They hire attendant from the agency and pay a fixed monthly amount to the agency. The attendant is paid a fixed plus maintenance assistance from the agency itself. He becomes in charge of the space and develops a sense of belonging.

Public toilet

The attendant’s salary and rewards are based on these ratings.

Users locate public toilets through an application of Agency X. They can rate the toilets and write reviews, to help other users rely on these facilities.




India has been focusing largely on providing toilet facilities across the country to omit open defecation. While there is a need to increase the number of facilities, the providers often neglect putting enough thought in their usability and accessibility. The facilities end up neglected, in a sorry condition. Importance of ergonomic usability and systems in place for maintenance cannot be underestimated for the sustainability of public toilets. Also, in a lot of cases provision is not enough to encourage people to use toilets and avoid defecation in the open. A majority of the urban poor prefer defecating in the open and need to be educated and motivated to use toilets.

Ideation / Shift from provision to usability



How can we clean and disinfect the toilets?

DISINFECTING BY COPPER PLATING OF FIXTURES The surfaces of copper and its alloys, such as brass and bronze, are antimicrobial. They have an inherent ability to kill a wide range of harmful microbes relatively rapidly – often within two hours or less – and with a high degree of efficiency. The research also suggests that if touch surfaces are made with copper alloys, there is reduced transmission of disease-causing organisms. This is widely used in hospitals, reducing patient infections in hospitals as much as 58%.


Outlets on skirting for steam clean / air outlets for quick drying of floors

Ideation / Shift from provision to usability / ideas


How can we design toilets that are easy to clean, maintain and service? Wall drains directing greywater from cleaning directly outside into plants around the perimeter.

Wall urinals - easily washed down and cleaned

Common piping units

Easy to service from outside Openable back-door to access plumbing lines from outside without shutting down the entire facility.


How might we build toilets that are always clean for the next user? E-toilets by Eram Scientific in Bangalore seem to answer this challenge as the toilet washes itself before a user enters. The toilets are programmed to flush 1.5 liters of water after 3 minutes of usage or 4.5 liters if usage is longer. It can also be programmed to clean the platform with a complete wash down after every 5 or 10 persons use the toilet. I visited one toilet in Kormangala, Bangalore where it was also being used by the slum dwellers nearby, challenging our assumption about reluctance and intimidation of these groups to use technology. Easy and robust technology can be quickly learned, adopted and accepted.

• Easy to find through mobile application • Robust technology • Portable • Economic manufacturing and installation

UNFORESEEN SOCIAL ADVANTAGE E-toilets have also become a good option for transgender and "third-gender" people. It is a single-seat automatic toilet, made for one person at a time to use, rather than a public lavatory with multiple stalls. Once someone gains access, the doors cannot be forced open. This ensures safety. Transgendered people can use them without fear of people barging in or being stared at.

Ideation / Shift from provision to usability / ideas


How can we bring behavioural change to discourage vandalism? Situation: People are physically constrained in a space, but not mentally engaged. People are bored and tend to fiddle with the property. Analogous behaviour: A similar behavior is observed in elevators which are highly prone to vandalism in the same manner. This behavior is discouraged by installing CCTV cameras in lifts, which has now become a common practice. Also, glass lifts in malls strongly controls this behavior by engaging the users as well as providing natural surveillance. A sense of being monitored or mentally engaging a user will discourage vandalism.

ENGAGING SPACE / UNIQUE FEATURES TOTO toilets at Narita Airport. From the outside, the facility appears to have translucent walls that reveal the silhouettes of the toilet users behind. But these are actually LED screens, playing prerecorded sequences that include dance parties and cleaning.

MAKING IT NOT TOO COMFORTABLE The Portland Loo has been a huge success offering a unique and balanced blend of privacy and security, The structure is designed with an open top and bottom, enabling law enforcement to know when there is more than one set of feet inside. The openings allow sound to flow, letting pedestrians hear the grunts of the person inside and the person inside hear the footsteps and conversation of pedestrians. Nobody is interested in sitting on such a toilet for long.


How can we maximize natural light and ventilation? NATURAL LIGHT:

Tensile structure

Glass window

Tensile structures, glass walls, skylights, glass blocks are common means for brining more natural light into the facility. Angled mirrors to reflect the sunlight has also been used in a public restroom in Norway.

NATURAL VENTILATION: Meshes of different kinds, mechanical ventilators or cut through patterns running at the top of the top of the walls for both light and ventilation.

Mirrors to reflect sunlight inside

Ideation / Shift from provision to usability / ideas


How can we encourage the urban poor used to defecating in the open to use public toilets? BRINGING THE INSIDE OUT OR OUTSIDE IN Designing toilets to bring in nature can satisfy their habit and perceptions of going in the open.

PROVIDING BATHING FACILITIES Provision of bathing facilities along with toilets by Sulabh (Toilet and bathing complexes) has encouraged more of the urban poor to use these facilitates for morning business.

How can we make it easier to locate public toilets?


SMARTPHONE APPLICATION According to a 2012 census, 60 percent of Indian households surveyed have one or more mobile devices while only 36.4 percent of households have a toilet. Given these statistics, a new partnership between Google and India’s Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) seems like a match in clean sanitation heaven: the introduction of a Google Maps tool that points users in the direction of toilets that are clean, safe and open for public use. 79

How can we empower the differently abled and elderly to rely on public toilets? ACCESSIBLE APPROACH TO THE FACILITIES Accessible toilets are built in toilet blocks but often there is no ramp or a steep ramp without grab rails to reach the toilet, making the facility inapproachable. Toilets are on the footpath, with no curb ramps or provision to get on the footpath with a wheelchair. Unfortunately, in India such a provision leads to two wheelers using the ramp to drive on the footpath in heavy traffic areas.

BRAILLE SIGNS ARE NOT ENOUGH Braille is often a tokenism by the government for publicity. There are no guides to know where the information in braille is placed and nobody wants to touch things in a public space to read braille.

Ideation / Shift from provision to usability / ideas


TRAINING THE ATTENDANTS TO HELP THE DIFFERENTLY ABLED ALLOWING A LARGER GROUP TO USE THE ACCESSIBLE TOILETS These toilets should be open to the elderly, differently abled and even to people with invisible disabilities such as poor bladder control. Even children should be allowed to enter with their parents, giving the parents more space to handle and position them on the toilet seat. This will enable larger population to reply on public toilets and regular use will help in maintenance.

How can we empower people to move around the city without worrying about their sanitation needs? SUSTAINABLE COMPACT TOILETS Placing self cleaning, sustainable compact toilets around the city at regular intervals can help people to rely on public toilets everywhere.


Shift from FACILITY to CIVIC PRIDE Public toilets are perceived to be dirty, unhygienic, highly neglected spaces. This attitude towards the provision and maintenance of public toilets as well as user’s perception towards these facilities needs to shifted from neglected, vandalized ruins to reliable, pleasant facilities, addressing vital human needs. As Clara Greed mentions in her book, an impression that the toilet ‘belongs’ to the community and is under surveillance will improve the situation. Culturally, providing adequate toilets at all hours will facilitate the development of the 24-hour city, help clean up the streets and alleyways and contribute to citizen choice, freedom and the quality of life.

Ideation / Shift from Facility to Civic pride



How can we encourage healthy social interactions around toilets? Insight: Women’s toilets are sociable locations. Women frequently talk to their friends, and even strangers, while using a loo.


These public toilets by architect Rohan Chavan are built around an old tree in the Indian city Thane, and includes a hot-pink sitting area where women can socialize. The three-by-nine-metre toilet block by Mumbai-based Chavan is named The Light Box – Restroom for Women. The space also includes vending machine for female hygiene products, as well as mobile phone charging points, a panic alarm system and room for the future inclusion of a cash machine. “Beyond the obvious toilet blocks, the restrooms aim to provide women an exclusive social space, something that is atypical of urban landscape in India,” said Agasti founder Sahej Mantri.


Ideation / Shift from Facility to Civic Pride / ideas


Can we transform perceptions through colors and graphics?



Sanitary towels and other sanpro are traditionally white, and nowadays often bleached sparkling white with dangerous chemicals when brown is the real colour of unbleached cotton. Blue symbolizes ‘hygiene’ and nowadays we find washing-up liquid, wet wipes and disinfectant with blue dye added. Similarly, the online survey established people’s preference for white ceramic toilet seats instead of steal as its easier to spot dirt on white and they often associate steel with railway toilets. White or light colored walls are also useful for reflecting natural light within the facility.



Can public toilets be energy producers?

Sulabh biogas plant The human excreta from the Sulabh Public toilet does not go waste. It is linked to the Sulabh Biogas Plant where it is treated and converted into gas. This Sulabh biogas is then used for cooking, lighting lamp, electricity generation, warming oneself and also street lighting.

Ideation / Shift from Facility to Civic Pride / ideas




This section explains the steps involved in the concept development for client, including material research and shortlisting and assembling of the final structure.




our solution


Conceptualization / Incremental solution


INCREMENTAL SOLUTION FOR CLIENT I have adopted the Ways to Grow Framework (on the left) from IDEO, to place my solution and offering to the client. A more incremental innovation is easier to implement and may actually offer the biggest impact to the community. Our solution lies in the incremental quadrant, but is close to inviting new users as it intends to transform the quality of service, and hence, people’s perception towards public toilets. The offerings for the users remain the same, while introducing changes in the functioning of the system, to benefit both the providers and users.


REDEFINED BRIEF A new brief was developed to address both the client (stakeholder) and user requirements in the design process.


To design prefabricated public toilet blocks (pay and use) that are privately owned, with provision for accessible toilets for smoother functioning, low maintenance structures.


Primary: Toilet users - men / women from diverse backgrounds. Secondary: Toilet attendant

CRITERIA • Privately owned and maintained • Life cycle: 5yrs+ • Low maintenance • Provision for advertisement(s) - at least one overhead horizontal advertisement panel • Overhead tank and provision for borewell • Maximize natural light and ventilation • 3 urinals, 2WCs in men and women and 1 accessible toilet. • Janitor should be placed inside while doing the layout • Storage for cleaning equipment • Provision for nappy changing (optional) • Prefabricated structure to be installed under a week after the foundation is ready

CONSTRAINTS: • Civil work for drainage / foundation • Fixtures can be off the shelf • No automation

Conceptualization / Redefined Brief




Form identity and function

How can we make the experience of a public toilet pleasant? How can we change the perception of high income groups towards public toilets? How can we design toilets that instill civic pride and respect? How can we design toilets that are easy to clean, maintain and service? How might we maximize light and ventilation in the toilets?


DESIGN PRINCIPLE PLEASANT Giving a sense of happy satisfaction

Conceptualization / Design Principle

The design principle drives the design language, aesthetics and feel of the final concept. It aims to transform the current perception and the dreaded experience of using a public toilet from “stinking” to “pleasant “, targeting the taboo attached with them.


OPEN / BREATHABLE: Natural light / ventilation, Transparency, Big, Spacious, Mesh

CLEAN: Smooth, Minimal, Transparency, Fresh, Breathable

LIGHT: Suspension, Levitation, Reflective Surface, Hollow, Bold Contours, Transparency



low wall

Nappy changing

low wall


Conceptualization / Layout iterations



FINAL LAYOUT Rainwater from roof

Overhead tank

Conceptualization / Final Layout


Freshwater lines Soiled water

Greywater from cleaning can either be reused after filtration or directed to the sewer

Connection to muncipality sewer

Filter for collected rainwater



Muncipality water supply or water tanker

Pumping water to the overhead tank


FORM IDENTITY ITERATIONS Defining themes for identity gave a clear direction and constraint for iterating extensively in few directions A strong identity becomes important here, as the client aims to earn revenue through advertisements. A strong visual identity becomes a mark of recognition and credibility that can go a long way to leave an impression on people.

Conceptualization / Form Identity iterations




Conceptualization / Form Identity iterations



Capsule form with louvered front. Symmetrical roof and plinth. Ambient lighting from the top and low vegetation at the bottom.

Conceptualization / Form Identity iterations


Symmetrical capsules on both sides, dividing the space into two. The two parts could be color coded for men and women.



Conceptualization / Form Identity iterations



Slant can be used to facilitate natural light, transparent/ translucent polycarbonate

Conceptualization / Form Identity iterations


DROP concept, for a dynamic form. The offcenter entrance represents the internal division of 60:40 (approx) for Men / Women. Overhead tank placed behind the advertisement, covered by the high roof.



Conceptualization / Form Identity iterations


Cantilevered roof dropping on one side, with perforated front wall. The roof angle is reflected in the toilet building as well, but it might reduce the space inside.



Conceptualization / Form Identity iterations



Conceptualization / Form Identity iterations


This concept highlights the advertisement, by transforming the roof into a pillar, holding the ad. Rainwater harvesting facilitated by sloping the roof into the center.



Conceptualization / Form Identity iterations


Water tank behind the ad.

Simple rectangular modules: extendable structures

Vertical ad as accent in a simple cuboidal structure. The overhead tank is placed behind it. The vertical columns are structural supports. With the simple rectangular modules and supports, the structure can be elongated as per the location and space available.



Conceptualization / Visualizing shortlisted forms





Conceptualization / Selected form



MATERIAL RESEARCH This section contains all the secondary and field research that went into studying and shortlisting materials.

Conceptualization / Material Research




Conceptualization / Material Research







Conceptualization / Material Research


MARKET RESEARCH FOR MATERIAL FEASIBILITY Its important to validate the feasibility of materials and understand its applications through experts and the respective dealers. After a broad secondary research on construction materials and shortlisting some according to my understanding, I carried out a market research to check their feasibility and viability. The firm was exceptionally supportive in this part of the project and set up meetings with certain vendors for us to learn about some very interesting materials. This was a great learning experience as the mentors were keen on us learning about new technologies and materials irrespective of its applications in this project. Materials were shortlisted after discussions with local vendors and internal mentors in college as well as mentors and experts at the firm.


Table 1

Resin board (Vibrant Technik)

Aluminium grills (extrusion)

UHPC concrete (architecture concrete) - Nuance studio

Resin board ( Fundermax Drummer high pressure laminate)


Panels, cladding

Louvers, framework

Exterior landscaping, hoarding, facades, combinations with other materials (wood, steel, glass), partitions, furniture

Panels, cladding (interior + exterio


4.5 X 1.8 / 2.5 sq.m. 8 mm thickness

Moulded in any shape and size Max. 4’ X 3’ at 12 mm thickness

2.8 X 1.3 sq.m 4.1 X1.85 / 1.3 sq.m 6-15 mm thickness

Life cycle

20years +

40-50 yrs

40 - 50 yrs

Impact / vandal resistance

Scratch resistance to an extent

Easily scratched

Can crack under extreme impact

9500 MPa Impact resistance Flame retardant

Flame retardant No expansion due to heat

Good for external use

Scratch resistant Exterior panels - UV resistance Interior panels - expansion

Weather resistance Flame retardant (Heat, Rain, UV resistant calamities, expansion due to heat insulation) Transportation (duration / cost)

2-8 weeks from the ordered date


550 per sq.m (sheet). + 175-200 (Framework) + 50-100 sq.m (labor)

Cleaning / maintenance / Coatings

Anti - microbial, cleaning only Easy to clean with soap water Low maintenance (exteriors)

6-8 weeks for manufacturing Customised - 14-15 weeks if not in stock - 12-13 weeks Light in weight Proper packing required - prone to cracks 350 per sq.ft.

Assembling details 18 mm gap between sheet and framework - good insulation MS framework - sandwich walls

Other info

Interior - direct cladding Curves possible, pattern cut, customisation, Brackets used for drainage optimisation

Conceptualization / Material Matrix

Min. 1500 per sq.ft. 40K per cubicle - with hardware 1800 - faceted tiles 1200 per sq.ft. for urinal partitions Easy to clean - soap water only Anti microbial (no acid) 7 Cleaning with soap water layers of coating for sinks Cannot be repaired easily once cracked Easy to install (already formed 30 sq.m in one day by a team of and moulded) five. Cladding with fasteners and rivets Panels installed on metal frames (metal frame) Anchored to the ground (if needed) Landscape use - Stand alone

Known for Extrusion quality and section detailing No curved sections available

Can replicate other materials easily due to small particle size. Lighter compared to normal concrete (being hollow) Maintained in different ways (flexibility)

Perforated panels for ceilings Curve - 3mm radius Customisation possible (branding)


ACP (aluminium composite panels) - core made of DPE

Pre cast concrete panels

Compact laminate

Expande aluminium mesh

furniture, partitions, cubicles, paneling, transportation vehicles and areas with higher cleaning and hygiene requirements.

broadly used in the areas such as highway, railway, residence, irrigation works and the protection partition of machines, electrical appliances, windows and


10 yrs+

5 yrs+

Water resistant, fire retardant,

superior mechanical properties to impact resistance. It can be applied on both horizontal and vertical surfaces. Resistant to water, moisture, stain,

Retains its shape when cut and cannot separate or fray. Often cutting to shape is the only fabrication needed. It has excellent corrosion

or) Signages, facade cladding in huge Wall panels (interior, exterior) structures


8’ X 4’ (1.5, 3, 4 mm thickness / 50 / 75 / 100 mm thick 5mm and 6 mm on request) Extrusion size (38 X 38 X 3) / (50 X 25 X3) mm 10 yrs with two coats of PVDF Excellent mechanical performance at minimal weight Scratch resistance upto 4 mm Corrosion resistant Fire retardant core can be used Silicon sealing between panels to make it waterproof Good quality - for insulation

graffiti, bacteria growth, scratch, impact, fire, cigarette burns and colour change

resistance when suitably coated, and the uncut knuckles support weight and withstand stress better than jointed welds or woven Light in weight and higher strength than other flat meshes

Light in weight - easy transportation

Light in weight - easy transportation

PVDP coating for durability / SDP coating to avoid fading and dullness Cleaning - once / twice a yr

Easy to clean Meets stringent hygiene requirements, surface edges can be disinfected Resistance against organic solvents 

Two sheets can be bent and joined MS framework, cement filling without rivets - but joints are visible Bending possible in one direction Riveting Metal frame - cladding

Easy handling, dense enough to hold onto fixtures.

Large number of finishes possible Cheap material for exterior cladding If <10m - 3mm thickness, >10m - 4 mm thickness

Easy installation, space saving and A major advantage of expanded easy to process mesh is that it is formed from a single piece of material so the process is not wasteful and therefore cost effective. 

Powder coating in your choice of colour will enhance its aesthetic appearance and add to its corrosion resistance as would plastic coating. Easy operation, long work life, enduring, graceful.


CONCEPT DETAILING Taking one of the shortlisted concepts forward, in this section, all the chosen materials and assembly of the final structure with renders is explained.

Concept Detailing




EXPANDED ALUMINIUM MESH A major advantage of expanded mesh is that it is formed from a single piece of material so the process is not wasteful and therefore cost effective. The material is cut and stretched while still leaving it attached at the knuckle. This allows it to retain its shape when cut and cannot separate or fray. The uncut knuckles support weight and withstand stress better than joints of welds. It offers higher strength-to-weight ratio than the original sheet material and allows free passage to light, heat, sound and air. Powder coating enhances its aesthetic appearance and add to its corrosion resistance as would plastic coating. They are broadly used in areas such as highway, railway, residence, irrigation works and the protection partition of machines, electrical appliances, windows and aquaculture.

Concept Detailing / Chosen Materials



For Walls (interior, exterior) and partitions They are solid grade, load bearing laminates with superior mechanical properties to impact resistance. These sheets are light-weight and easy to transport. Also, the high density is useful for holding the fixtures onto this material. Hence, they are well suited for this purpose. Compact sheets are resistant to water, moisture, stain, graffiti, bacteria growth, scratch, impact, fire, cigarette burns and color change, provides good dimensional stability and flatness. They provide good self-supporting function, hence will hold stable with the aluminium extrusions. They meet the criteria of low maintenance and are easy to clean, meets stringent hygiene requirements and surface edges can be disinfected. They are usually used for furniture, partitions, cubicles, paneling, transportation vehicles and areas with higher cleaning and hygiene requirements. These are similar to the resin boards offered by Fundermax and Vibrant Technik. Other vendors for compact sheets are Merino laminates and Greenlam, which are also easily available and are cost effecient.

ACRYLIC EXTRUSIONS FOR ACCENT Acrylic material can be easily molded to achieve fuzzy shapes at a cost which is only a fraction of glass. In solid state, acrylic sheets can be cut and mechanized using laser cut CNC machines to provide extrusion-like profiles. Extrusions provide economical production and flexibility. An alternative to acrylic extrusions are polycarbonate extrusions.


COMBINATION OF CORRUGATED GI AND POLYCARBONATE SHEETS FOR ROOF Both the sheets are widely used in roofing and in some cases, for facades. Both have high impact resistance and durability. Polycarbonate allow high light transmission, facilitating natural light inside the structure. A combination of both sheets allows enough natural light inside without too much light to heat up the space. Also, polycarbonate sheets might turn yellow and require replacement, the combination gives an advantage of replacing only half the roof.

Aluminium extrusions for floor to wall coving.

LINEAR DRAIN Nani traps for greywater in the toilets are the part of drainage closest to the users and the most visible one. The details around these are often ugly and shabby. There are good chances of caps getting lost and dirt and waste gets collected here. A linear drain running along the perimeter helps in keeping the floors dry by increasing the area of drainage and facilitate easy and thorough cleaning. An alternative is a wall drain, but this might be too complex and tedious to install. Concept Detailing / Chosen Materials


ALUMINIUM EXTRUSIONS (for support structure)

Aluminium extrusions are widely used in the present dayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s sophisticated architecture. They provide qualities of aesthetic appeal, flexibility, minimal costs & durability. In construction, extruded aluminum components resist distortion caused by weather and building movement. They retain strength and flexibility under loads and spring back from the shock of impact. Aluminum extrusions have many uses in the electronics, aerospace, automotive, mass transit, bridge decking, telecommunications, solar/renewable energy industries, and more.

VINYL FLOORING Flooring plays an important role in the ease of cleaning as well as the perception of it for the users. Wet areas are highly unhygienic and major concerns in pubic toilets according to the survey. Continuous flooring like vinyl flooring is better than anything with joins in it. It avoids grout lines for easy maneuvering of wheelchairs, baby carriages and strollers, as well as reduces the surfaces where bacteria, viruses and mold can propagate. A floor-towall cove base option prevents dirt build-up in corners and facilitates cleaning. Alternates to the vinyl flooring are large Tiles (1200 X 800 mm sq., matte, non-slip), Epoxy, Stainless steel and tiles in combination with concave joinery.


PREFABRICATION Prefabrication is the practice of assembling components of a structure in a factory or other manufacturing site, and transporting complete assemblies or sub-assemblies to the construction site where the structure is to be located. The theory behind the method is that time and cost is saved if similar construction tasks can be grouped, and assembly line techniques can be employed in prefabrication at a location where skilled labour is available, while congestion at the assembly site, which wastes time, can be reduced. For this project, the structure needs to be prefabricated and assembled on site within a week. The entire structure can be prepared off site and then installed on the site, but because of the plumbing requirements of a toilet, it will be more feasible to transport stacked components and assemble the structure with plumbing lines on site itself.

Concept Detailing / Prefabrication


PREFAB MODULES Modularity means using the same module in multiple configurations enabling a large variety of designs without using many component types. This modularity brings several advantages such as reduced capital requirements and economies. Modularity is especially advantageous when the scale and scope of the project are relatively large, which makes it a practical and economic solution here, as the facilities need to be placed and distributed across cities.






5 sizes of sandwich panels 1

WC panel (900 mm) - 5 Units


Nappy changing & counter (1200 mm) - 2 Units


Disabled WC / side (urinal) walls (1500) - 5 Units


Wash basin panel (2000) - 2 units


Extra walls (1350mm) - 2 units

Concept Detailing / Prefab Modules



Two types of extrusions




Partition between two walls


Adjacent walls



Partition on one end (entrances)

Two partitions

Combinations - connected with allen key




Concept Detailing / Sandwich Panel assembly




PU foam for protecting the plumbing from impact 3

1 Compact laminate sheets (8mm)



Allen key for locking 2

Aluminium or UPVC extrusions


Hooks for ease of managing the locking of exterior panel after servicing Exterior panel - easily opened with allen key for maintenance

The same allen key size is used to hold the panels to the extrusions as well as the extrusions to each other. Any part can be opened and replaced / repaired on site easily.

Allen Key 139


Adding the roof support structure and placing GI and polycarbonate sheets Rainwater channel inside

6 3



Provision for ad boxes

Accent fixed with lighting inside

Bottom with holes for lighting up the vicinity


Compact sheets of 8 mm thickness for Walls (interior, exterior) and partitions



PVC pipes for plumbing

Aluminium extrusions as support structures and rainwater channels

Concept Detailing / Structure Assembly



PU (Polyurethane) foam for protecting the sandwiched plumbing


Contrasting color scheme, which is easily distinguishable by any condition of colorblindness. Light interiors


Dark exteriors


Outer compact sheet closes the sandwiched wall. They are locked with allen key. So it can be opened easily form the back for service.

Inner compact sheet and extrusions are places with plumbing installed on it. Compact sheets are dense and can hold fixtures firmly.



PU foam can be placed for protecting the plumbing (optional)





Plinth is prepared with a C-channel for placing the walls and extrusions

Acrylic extrusions for the teal accent with lighting installed inside. Polycarbonate extrusion is another alternate



GI and polycarbonate sheets combination for roof

Expanded Aluminium mesh for increased natural light and ventilation


Allen key for fastening the panels to the extrusions.


LAYOUT Offset entrance maze blocks the view yet allows easier, hands-free access, which prevents the spread of disease that might otherwise occur when coming in contact with a door. Doorless entry provides visual privacy while simultaneously offering a measure of security by allowing the passage of sound.

A lot of men come only for washing face, hands and are not bound to pay for those activities. This position helps the janitor monitor that.

Concept Detailing / Layout

Unisex toilet for the disabled placed as buffer between the male and female sections of the toilet blocks.



Sitting space for children and other companions. Space for keep belongings.

Bench Foldable baby changing table Privacy for women without the need of a main door Open storage for cleaning equipment and janitorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s belongings Easy accessibility for janitor to help the differently abled

Easy surveillance of people and surroundings by janitor, facing towards the main road.

WOMENâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S ENTRY

Ramps for wheelchairs, baby strollers etc.


Plumbing lines: Directly connected to overhead tank




4 3

1. Shelf with hooks provides greater flexibility to accommodate userâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s belongings.

2. Push flush with direct connection to the overhead tank, gets rid of the waiting period associated with tank toilets, especially useful in commercial settings and also has reduced chance of mechanical breakdowns. Possibility of a foot flush can be considered to reduce contact points.

Concept Detailing / Water Closets

3. Individual dustbins are for women to dispose sanitary napkins. Open dustbins should be avoided and dustbins with pivoted caps work well in terms of usability and durability of mechanism. Chutes attached to the back of the wall are the most hygienic and space saving option but not always viable for small settings like these.. 144

Most public toilets in Bangalore, have Indian (squat) toilets due to cultural preferance as well as hyfiene issues. Also, the western toilets are much more difficult to maintain. A combination of both (Indian and Western) toilets can satisfy a larger number of users. According to the user survey, most people (especially women), prefer western toilets (for comfort) but choose Indian toilets due to hygiene issues. In cases when the users are wearing uncomfortable clothing or have difficulty in squatting, western toilets can be a convenient alternative, if well maintained.

4. Hand faucets are most commonly used in off-street public toilets. A more robust alternative is an ablution tap and bucket, which takes up space and makes the setting shabby. If well-maintained, hand faucets can also be sustainable.

Idea for a water dispenser with mug. This avoids the chance of leaking taps and no bucket is needed.



Circulation space of 1055mm(diameter) enables 90 degree maneuvering of the wheelchair

Double sided hinge to always open the doors away from the person

Concept Detailing / Accessible toilet

Space for attendant to help

A parallel approach is the easiest for transferring from a wheelchair to a toilet seat as per United Nations Enable guidelines.



A unisex unit is always desirable so as to allow a disabled person to be assisted by an attendant of the opposite sex. The sign also mentions that the facility can be used by the elderly as well.

The door colour contrasts with the adjoining wall to facilitate identification by people with visual impairments.


Thresholds is omitted and weather-stripping at the door bottom is should be to minimize hindrance.

Kickboard at the door bottom prevents damage 4 to the door by the different mobility aids used. 3


Textured flooring in contrast color (or reflecting surface) guides the visually impaired through change in sound feedback. Reflectors are useful for partially-blind who retain sensitivity to wards light.

The disabled should include those encumbered by pushchairs (baby buggies), luggage and shopping; those temporarily disabled by illness or accident; the pregnant; the incontinent; those with restrictive conditions such as heart problems and blood pressure; the elderly; all small children trying to reach up to an adult size world (Adams and Ingham, 1998); and all those without a car; â&#x20AC;&#x201C; in addition to the officially registered disabled (Jones, 1994). All these disen- abled groups are physically prevented from using the â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;abledâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; toilets. Source: Inclusive Urban Design: Public Toilets by Clara Greed 147




1. Wall mounted lever taps or push taps are easy to maintain and convenient for users. Push taps ensure that no taps are left running by the users. Taps should be fixed with aerators for water conservation and reduction in energy costs.

2. Installation of sanitary napkinsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; vending machine and incinerators for disposal can be considered if feasible for certain locations. However, there are some concerns about the technology of mini incinerators as there are no studies testifying that emissions from such incinerators do not adversely affect public health.

Using an Incinerator Concept Detailing / Wash Basin



Trough urinals can cater for all heights but those that are accessed by a step are problematic for disabled people. Hence, no step is provided here, below the urinals. The installation height of the urinal might vary depending upon its styling.

Concept Detailing / Urinal Panel



1. Expanded aluminium mesh for increased ventilation and natural lighting.

2. Concealed lighting in the hollow roof supports for lighting up the interiors.



5 4

5. Accent as strong form identity for the stakeholders, glows at night increasing visibility from far away. Also, it is installed with rope light inside to light up the vicinity.

Concept Detailing / Structure Details



6. Clear universal signage, visible from the front for separate male / female and differently abled toilet entrances.


4. Provision for overhead ad addresses the moving traffic, visible from away and the ad at the bottom is clearly visible to the pedestrians and passers by. Revenue through advertisement helps in sustaining the facility.


6 7

8 9

7. The janitor has a clear view of the for ease of surveillance of the users and the surroundings.

8. Seating space outside for companions to wait.

9. Low vegetation or landscaping around the facility makes it pleasant. Tall vegetation is avoided for clear visibility.


Expanded aluminium mesh

Easily accessible Overhead Tank for service and refilling.

Hollow MS / aluminium extrusion for roof support structure


Alumimium extrusions run the top to sup alumium plate the tank is pla

Concept Detailing / Structure Details


ROOF combination of corrugated GI and polycarbonate sheets

Cut out pattern at the bottom of the accent to light up the vicinity

Channel for collecting rainwater through the mesh

nwater channel

Intersection at the back for rainwater harvesting

n to pport e where aced



3 1

STORAGE FOR CLEANING EQUIPMENT 3. Open storage space for the cleaning equipent and janitorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s belongings in his cubicle. The partition hides it from the usersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; sight, reducing clutter. Open storage avoids the tedious process of opening and closing a closet and the cleaning cart comes in handy as he has to clean the space thrice a day.

Concept Detailing / Structure Details






Urinals : â&#x201A;š2/WC (men / women) : â&#x201A;š5/Accessible toilets : No charges applied Contact the undersigned to report any inconvenience caused Sukhad Public Toilets : +91 - 9909345678

1. Clearly mentioned charges (inside) for using the facility avoids miscommunication and disputes between the users and janitor. Contact number for reporting damage or other issues in place, increases credibility of service.

Sukhad Public toilets Timings: 7:00am - 10:00pm Owned and maintained by Pradeep Ads Contact: 9909005678

2. Mentioning the timings enables users to rely on the facility accordingly. The owner name and contact details are also mentioned here.


Concept Detailing / Final renders



Concept Detailing / Final renders



MODEL MAKING Model making helps to see a tangible output and understand proportions. Also, a lot of unresolved details are realised while making a 3D form of somethign that was only visualised on paper or software. I made a model in the scale of 1:15 for ease of portability. PVC sheet base and polycarbonate sheets covered with different vinyls are the major materials used in this model. The toilets seats and urinals were 3D printed and finished using Plaster of Paris.

Concept Detailing / Model making




Concept Detailing / Structure Details







TECHNICAL DRAWINGS All measurements in mm



R150.00 1200.00





Concept Detailing / Technical Drawings




C-channel in the plinth to hold the panels intact



Rope light



Blue accent (in FRP) with concealed rope light



Cut out pattern at the bottom to light up the vicinity












8.00 8.00





54.00 50.00













150.00 600.00













Concept Detailing / Technical Drawings


Tank size 1050 mm 2500 mm

760 mm

Tank capacity: 2000 ltrs (approx.)













2100.00 50.00



700.00 3000.00 700.00

320.00 360.00 350.00


Concept Detailing / Technical Drawings













700.00 700.00







550.00 100.00















Concept Detailing / Technical Drawings







376.50 100.00













360.00 800.00

































Concept Detailing / Technical Drawings










750.00 1350.00






















REFLECTIONS As with any new venture, I started with all the excitement of a new city, new people, new projects and so on. I had high expectations from myself and wanted to make a significant contribution to the firm that could be appreciated and leave a mark. I was curious to meet new people and learn about their backgrounds and way of working. Initially as we proceeded, I started gaining confidence and the initial phases of research, and form iterations went well as I recognised my strengths in those areas. I wanted to take up more projects to contribute and work with more number of people at the firm. But, as I proceeded, after three months, I started losing faith in my own project and was not even able to cope up enough to make contributions to others.  I was given all the freedom to work on the project my way, but at the same time I found it hard to work and deliver without strict constraints and defined challenges. I was not able to zero in on the Dos and Donts for the project, myself. This is when I realised my weakness for not being able to work without peer pressure, to not know the next steps or to not feel occupied enough and the low efficiency, turned into frustration that I couldn’t express.  However, with the help of my mentors, I was able to finish the project in the firm at a decent level. In the last week, I got a chance to present all the work to Nigel Foley and Michael Foley, and get their feedback for further improvements and how the firm could use this work.  It was a unique experience where I learned a lot about my strengths and shortcomings, both at a professional and personal level. Foley designs is built with loving, passionate people, who made me feel at home. 


WAY FORWARD Professor Minal Patel did her Bachelors of Architecture from IED, V. V nagar, Anand and Masters in Architecture in Urban Design from CEPT in 1998. Practicing since 1993, she has dealt with a number of large housing schemes, Commercial and institutional buildings to preparing town planning schemes and road designs for government. She is actively involved in the field of Urban planning and also in the design and architecture education as a visiting facuity in C.E.P.T (Ahmedabad), IED (V V Nagar) and UID(Gandhinagar) Professor Minal is a part of the Bharatiya Stree Shakti. Having worked on various large scale Urban space planning projects, she was asked to address the topic of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Women safe women smart citiesâ&#x20AC;? at the National consultative seminar. She thought it was a great opportunity to bring about a change in the society and considered students as the force to drive that change. She immediately approached me and Sahil Makhani,as she knew our thesis projects addressed public utilities, to come up with Ideas for proper location of public toilets, promoting a healthy life style, using the dead space under flyovers and improvement in bus shelter facilities in Ahmedabad, Gujarat.

Way forward




Proposal for Ahmedabad

Organized by Bharatiya Stree Shakti In association with National Commission for women Institute of Public Administration



• Safe roads (Footpaths, elevated walkways etc)

• Hostels and housing for single women

• Toilets at more intervals and clean toilets with sanitary napkins

• Safe and moderate priced short stay hostels for ladies

• Proper bus stops with solar cellphone chargers, emergency numbers, sitting etc

• Women’s joint ownership in properties

• Safe transportation for women

• Senior citizen stay and care homes

• Drinking water and healthy food stalls at every bus stop • Crèche facilities at work places • Green and clean parks • Safe schools and colleges • Women police patrolling at night

Way forward / Seminar introduction



Three cities of Gujarat have been selected in the list of Smart cities.



Shivranjini Flyover

S G Highway

Iscon Flyover Way forward / Existing scenarios : Ahmedabad


During the field research the different types of sites visited were: 1. Flyovers: They have a lot of dead area under them which could be put to good use. Hence, through the research we were trying to come up with as many different ideas as possible to utilize this space, improving the lives of people. Also making sure that the interventions do not give rise to new problems. The following were the major tasks while observing: Which is the best spot for public toilets ? How can we generate maximum revenue for maintaining these toilets through advertisements and other means? How well can the toilets be connected to different means of transport? What are different activities happening under the flyover ? Signage of these public toilets where it is visible to maximum people. Making the toilets assure the women bus commuters of their sanitation needs. Thus, making them feel independent. Other ideas which can be implemented for promoting a healthier life style. What can be the different revenue systems and layouts for organizing the stalls under the flyovers currently scattered in a haphazard way hindering the traffic and other footpath activities ? Which Technological advancements are viable and can have a bigger impact on the users ? Ways to stop the unsocial activities under the flyovers. 2. Highway Bus stops: Observing these newly made bus stops, trying to think of possibilities that can arise by the availability of technology which would ease the commuters wait. The following were the major tasks while observing : How can we take the advantage of such a waiting space for awareness ? What are the technological enhancements which can make the stop smarter and increase its reliability and assurance ? Ways to promote a healthier life style ? Planning a sustainable revenue system for maintenance. 185

SURVEY PREPARATIONS AND FINDINGS An online survey to gain an understanding of peopleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s perception about Smart Cities and safety, was floated across the city of Ahmedabad. We worked on the proposals for general infrastructure, mostly focusing on the design and planning of public utilities like bus stops and toilets around the city.

Do you always feel safe while traveling around the city?

Way forward / Survey preparation and findings




PLANNING PUBLIC TOILETS CURRENT SCENARIO A lot of space below flyovers is government owned and remains highly underutilized. They often become spots for casual, unorganized sector of pan walas or barbers. These spaces can be utilized for provision of public toilets, giving a strong, ready infrastructure at frequent intervals around the city to place these facilities.

Way forward / Planning public toilets


PROPOSAL: SCEANRIO 1 Separate, stand alone toilets for men and women. • Utilizing a dead area • Not obstructing the parking space • Avoiding unorganized use of this space like the homeless using it for sleeping, by roadside barbers and other slum dwellers.


Proposal of the Scenario in the conference 189

PROPOSAL: SCENARIO 2 Separate, stand alone toilets for men and women. Revenue generation through advertisements for maintaining the facilities.

FEATURES Separate toilets for men, women at busy junction, streets.

Healthy food stalls on lease.

Stands for pink rickshaws and pink cabs.

Defining toilet perimeter for safety and maintenance.

Women toilets to have sanitary pad dispensers, disposal facilities.

Emergency numbers written everywhere.

Way forward/ Public toilets


Sanitary pad dispensers


Water ATMs

Pink transportation

Sanitary pad disposal


Emergency numbers displayed



Stall keepers maintain the toilets in return of the incentives

HEALTHY FOOD STALLS Stalls given out on lease

Revenue generation through advertisements - a part given as incentives to the stall keepers


Way forward/ Public toilets / Layout and revenue generation





BUS STOPS CURRENT SCENARIO These spaces can be utilized for provision of public toilets, giving a strong, ready infrastructure at frequent intervals around the city to place these facilities.


INCLUDED WITH: Unisex toilet attached with the bu stop.

Real time display

Solar powered Way forward / Bus stops

Water ATMs

Charging ports

Healthy food stalls on lease.

Emergency numbers displayed on bus stops. 194

PROPOSAL: SCENARIO • Bus stops with clean design language, extended to accommodate healthy food stalls. • Increase in business in this unorganized sector of roadside stalls • The stall owners in return would be responsible for maintaining the bus shelters.

The bus shelters would be designed to accommodate the same toilet modules as used under the flyovers for feasibility. 195

BIBLIOGRAPHY BOOKS AND DOCUMENTS • Clara Greed, Inclusive Urban Design : Public Toilets • Profile, Dr. Bindeshwar Pathak • IS 2064 (1993): Code of practice for selection, installation and maintenance of sanitary appliances [CED 24: Public Health Engineering.] • SP 35 (1987): Handbook on Water Supply and Drainage (with Special Emphasis on Plumbing) [CED 24: Public Health Engineering.] • Guidelines for Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM), December 2014  • Guidelines and Space Standards for Barrier free Environment For disabled and Elderly persons  • HCD Toolkit, Ideo : 2nd Edition  • The Field Guide to Human-Centered Design By, 1st Edition © 2015 • Creative Confidence, by Tom Kelley and David Kelley • Neufert - Architects’ Data by Ernst & Peter Neufert. • Indian Anthropometric Dimensions by Deskumar Chakrabarty, NID, 1997. • A Design Inquiry into the Internet of Things, Master thesis by Akshan Ish, PGDP, NID, October 2015. • Re-positioning traditional, Graduation Project by Burhan Ud Din, NID, February 2016. • Bachelor Thesis with Chevrolet India Design Studio by Gaurang Nagre, Nid, February 2013.

OPEN SOURCE GOOGLE IMAGES FOR: • Design Principles • Ideation • Material Research



WEBSITES • “The ADA-Compliant Restroom.” The ADA-Compliant Restroom. • “ADA GRAB BAR REQUIREMENTS FOR SHOWER STALLS, BATH TUBS, AND TOILET STALLS.” Americans with Disabilities (ADA) Guidelines for the Bathroom. • “Pivotek Prefabricated Bathrooms | Our Process.” PIVOTek. • WAREXmarketing. “WAREX_Component Buildings_EN.wmv.” YouTube. YouTube, 05 Aug. 2011. • “Foot Operated Toilet Flush Valve.” Foot Operated Toilet Flush Valve, China Foot Operated Toilet Flush Valve Manufacturer • “Indian StandardCODE OF PRACTICE FOR SANITARY PIPE WORK ABOVE GROUND FOR BUILDINGS.” Indian Standard: CODE OF PRACTICE FOR SANITARY PIPE WORK ABOVE GROUND FOR BUILDINGS. • “Indian Authorities Are out in Force to Enforce the Use of Toilets.” Public Radio International. • “Going Green’s Modular Panel System:.” Going Green Prefab Modular Buildings and Temporary Homes - Affordable Housing - Affordable Prefabricated Houses - Cape Town, South Africa. • Staff, Buildipedia. “Louvers.” Louvers - Buildipedia. • “COLORBREWER 2.0.” ColorBrewer: Color Advice for Maps. • “Clean Disposal.” Waste and Drainage Systems Products , Geberit GISA. • “Color Universal Design (CUD) / Colorblind Barrier Free.” Color Universal Design (CUD) / Colorblind Barrier Free. “Proposal: Panelized Building System.” Systemsgroup. • “Plumbing System And Bathroom Fixture.” Plumbing System And Bathroom Fixture | Archinomy. • @thebetterindia. “How Can Women Dispose Sanitary Napkins? This Man Has an EcoFriendly Solution!” The Better India. • Johansson, Roger. “10 Colour Contrast Checking Tools to Improve the Accessibility of Your Design.” 10 Colour Contrast Checking Tools to Improve the Accessibility of Your Design | 456 Berea Street. • “Friendly Amenities.” Friendly Amenities -- Making Decisions About Restroom Structures. • “UN Enable - Accessibility.” United Nations. United Nations, n.d.



Profile for Devanshi Mehra

Thesis project 2016 (Public Toilets)  

Thesis project 2016 (Public Toilets)