Free to transit riders
As part of a six-month pilot program, Metro announced it added restrooms to three of its busiest stations for riders, along with a non-public restroom for transit operators.
“One of the challenging issues that we've grappled with over the years is the frequent request by riders for Metro to add public restrooms at stations,” Steve Hymon wrote on Metro's blog, The Source. “Quite understandably, riders want to be ... comfortable especially on long trips across our huge service area.”
The transit agency partnered with a start-up company called Throne, which aims to address a lack of public restrooms. Metro added restrooms at the Westlake/MacArthur Park station on the B (Red)/D (Purple) Lines; Willowbrook/Rosa Parks station on the A (Blue)/C (Green) Lines; and the Norwalk station on the C Line.
Metro also added a non-public restroom for bus/train operators at the Sylmar/San Fernando Metrolink station.
The Throne units are portable, ADA accessible, touchless and include a flushing toilet, a sink with running water and a ventilation system. The units run on solar power and require no connections to water, sewer or electricity.
Each unit has a freshwater and wastewater tank that is more than four times larger that what's found in a regular portable toilet, according to Throne.
The toilets will be free and can be unlocked using a QR code or by sending a text message with a cell phone -- instructions are labeled on the outside of the restroom both in English and Spanish.
Toilets will be open 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week. Each restroom unit has 21 internet-connected sensors that allow Throne to know if everything is working, and when units need cleaning.
Users can also rate their experience and report issues. Metro ambassadors will have the ability to open toilets if not in use and will be monitoring the toilets to help riders access them, if needed.