Futuristic New Street Toilets Are Coming to San Francisco

SmithGroupJJR
SmithGroupJJR

San Francisco’s streets are getting shiny new additions: futuristic-looking public toilets. Co.Design reports that San Francisco’s Department of Public Works has chosen a new design for self-cleaning street toilets by the architectural firm SmithGroupJJR that will eventually replace the city’s current public toilets.

The design is a stark contrast to the current San Francisco toilet aesthetic, a green knockoff of Paris’s Sanisettes. (They’re made by the same company that pioneered the Parisian version, JCDecaux.) The tall, curvy silver pods, called AmeniTREES, are topped with green roof gardens designed to collect rainwater that can then be used to flush the toilets and clean the kiosks themselves. They come in several different variations, including a single or double bathroom unit, one with benches, a street kiosk that can be used for retail or information services, and a design that can be topped by a tree. The pavilions also have room for exterior advertising.

Renderings of the silver pod bathrooms from the side and the top
SmithGroupJJR

“The design blends sculpture with technology in a way that conceptually, and literally, reflects San Francisco’s unique neighborhoods,” the firm’s design principal, Bill Katz, explained in a press statement. “Together, the varied kiosks and public toilets design will also tell a sustainability story through water re-use and native landscapes.”

San Francisco has a major street-poop problem, in part due to its large homeless population. The city has the second biggest homeless population in the country, behind New York City, and data collected in 2017 shows that the city has around 7500 people living on its streets. Though the city started rolling out sidewalk commodes in 1996, it doesn’t have nearly enough public toilets to match demand. There are only 28 public toilets across the city right now, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

These designs aren’t ready to go straight into construction first—the designers have to work with JCDeaux, which installs the city’s toilets, to adapt them “to the realities of construction and maintenance,” as the Chronicle puts it. Then, those plans will have to be submitted to the city’s arts commission and historic preservation commission before they can be installed.

[h/t Co.Design]

Decorate Your Walls With This Poster of Every Single Character From The Office

Pop Chart Labs
Pop Chart Labs

NBC’s The Office will celebrate its 15th anniversary next year, and fans remain as engaged as ever in the characters who made the show a success. With this poster from Pop Chart, you can show off your own fondness for the show’s beloved cast of personalities.

The print by itself sells for $40, but various finishing options make it a little more expensive. Pop Chart’s poster features 171 different “Faces of Scranton”—plus 16 “Threat Level Midnight” characters and six of Michael Scott’s alter egos—all of which include biographical information like job titles, nicknames, and relationship details.


Pop Chart Labs

Pop Chart’s “Faces of Scranton” print comes just in time for the holidays. If you’re looking for other pop culture-themed gifts for your friends and relatives (or for yourself!), check out this list of 12 products for people who can’t get enough of The Office.

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Hellvetica Is the Typeface of Your Nightmares

Zephyr18/iStock via Getty Images
Zephyr18/iStock via Getty Images

If you spot a slack-jawed graphic designer staring at their computer screen with an expression of horror, they haven’t just seen a ghost—they’ve seen Hellvetica.

Though the terrible typeface is meant as a Halloween-themed take on the traditionally pleasing Helvetica, it doesn’t contain jagged edges, dripping blood, or any other characteristically spooky elements you might imagine.

Instead, it’s just really poorly spaced. In typography, the process of adjusting the space between letters is called kerning. While you probably peruse materials typed in well-kerned fonts without thinking about letter spacing at all, sloppy kerning can make things pretty difficult to read.

According to The Verge, the deliberate kerning catastrophe that is Hellvetica was masterminded by New York-based creative directors Zack Roif and Matthew Woodward, who may have just become the graphic design industry’s first supervillains.

“Kern in hell,” the website states, along with “Welcome to type purgatory,” and “The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog and into the underworld,” all typed in the visually abhorrent Hellvetica.

It also features a fake quote from the Swiss creator of Helvetica, Max Miedinger, who died in 1980 and is undoubtedly rolling in his grave. “What have you done?” he supposedly said.

However, it did pique the interest of the diabolical founder of hell itself.

“I don’t hate it,” Satan said.

If you want to partake in the pandemonium by typing in Hellvetica this Halloween or forever, you can download it here.

[h/t The Verge]

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