We spend a lot of time worrying about the design of our foreground buildings like art galleries, but give almost no thought at all to the prosaic, basic needs that every city should supply, particularly to those who are not in cars. So if you are a driver and can get from your house to your office at high speed, you don't think much about public washrooms, but if you are a flÃ¢neur actually enjoying your city or a tourist attraction, such public utilities become really important.
That's why I love this structure by TreeHugger favourites Todd Saunders and Tommie Wilhelmsen; it is, believe it or not, a public toilet.
"The architecture of the public toilet is opposite of the lookout. While the lookout is light looking the pubic toilet is black painted concrete that is more heavy and solid in appearance. The building is pushed slightly over the edge. The gives it drama yet also creates a facade that is inaccessible to the public. People can look out to the great view from inside the toilets, but no one can look in."
Imagine what our cities and towns would be like if everyone put such care into the design of the basic, prosaic structures around us.
Instead, in North America it will go out in a "design-build" proposal and some engineering firm will turn out a dumb bomb-proof box.
When instead we should be making beautiful things, built to last. Todd Saunders via Arch Daily
More Todd Saunders and Tommie Wilhelmsen in TreeHugger
BlueSkyMod Prefab Cabin
Tommie Wilhelmsen's Kolonihagen Summerhouse
And we didn't show this in TreeHugger but you must see the Aurland Lookout