San Francisco was inspired to put a new line of defense to the test when he came across a report of how well the idea introduced in march, in Hamburg, Germany, was going, that is walls that ‘pee back’ at individuals who relieved themselves in public.
San Francisco can soon bid goodbye to the stench and mess of public urination with walls that splash urine back at the offending individuals.
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Public urination is such a problem in San Francisco that the city’s Public Works Department is hoping to curb the issue by introducing a special paint with a repellent surface that makes urine splash right back onto the offending reliever.
After an announcement in March asking residents to weigh in on where to test it, the pee-reflecting paint has now been introduced at nine city walls in locations deemed popular amongst public urinators.
Public urination has been a long-standing issue in the city — a 2002 law meant to ban it has seen little success, despite the $50-$200 fee.
The city has also introduced Pit Stop stations, a series of public facilities put in place to provide portable toilets and sinks in San Francisco’s most impacted neighborhoods, but the stations operate on limited hours — that is, mostly on weekday afternoons and evenings.
Director of the Department of San Francisco Public Works, Mohammed Nuru, said, “Based on Hamburg, we know this pilot program is going to work. It will reduce the number of people using the walls. I really think it will deter them.”
The walls will be coated with ‘Ultra-Ever Dry’, a hydrophobic substance that repels any liquid.
Currently, this will be rolled out in a pilot testing phase with nine walls in the Tenderloin, the Mission and South of Market. It costs “a couple hundred dollars” for the painting and installation of each wall, according to SF Gate.
Public urination in San Francisco is an offence with a penalty of US$50-US$500 fine.