The new restroom facilities on Boston Common have been open for three weeks, and they have proven to be extremely popular! There already have been an average of 290 users per day over a five-day period. As with any new project, there have been a few minor issues and unanticipated problems to solve, but those have been negligible.  The configuration of women’s, men’s and ADA restrooms is working very well with short, if any wait times for the public. Thankfully, the restrooms are air-conditioned and were comfortably cool during the recent heat wave.

If you have not already seen it, we wrapped the facility in an 1870 birds-eye perspective of Boston Common and the surrounding city. It is located along MacArthur Mall parallel to Charles Street, halfway between the Charles/Beacon entrance to the Common and the mid-block crossing of Charles Street. This location allows the unit to be used by Public Garden visitors as well as visitors to the Common.

The unit has:

  • 4 women’s stalls and a sink
  • 1 men’s stall, 3 urinals, and a sink
  • 1 ADA restroom with toilet and sink
  • Baby changing station
  • Monitoring personnel on site, who has use of a kiosk next to the unit, during hours of operation
  • Bathrooms are cleaned every 4 hours, and regularly pumped out
  • Hours of operation from 7:00 am – 9:00 pm through October

We are working, as always, in partnership with Boston Parks and Recreation to make this pilot program a success. Depending on what we learn during this first year, we will bring the bathrooms back for one or two more years – while the Boston Common Master Plan is being undertaken. What we learn during this pilot, and what we hear during the master planning process, will inform proposals for increased permanent restroom facilities on the Common.

The Friends wishes to thank the Harold Whitworth Pierce Charitable Trust for their very generous gift to fund this program and increase the availability of restrooms on the Common. There is a great need in our parks for such facilities, and we are grateful that the Trust took the initiative to make this program possible for Boston Common, the city’s most heavily used park.