Bureau A installs pink marble urinal at Zurich car park

| 16 comments

Zurich citizens can now relieve themselves at a pink marble public pissoir, installed at an open-air car park by local architecture firm Bureau A (+ slideshow).

Fountain 2017 by Bureau A

Composed of pink Portuguese marble imported from Lisbon, the Fountain 2017 piece is one of three installations curated by Silvia Converso, Michele D'Ariano Simionato and Caterina Steiner as part of the Common Ground art project.

Fountain 2017 by Bureau A

"In the form of a noble fountain, a classical figure of occidental culture, Lisbon sends a solid salute to rich Zurich," said a statement from Bureau A, which recently installed a miniature cardboard city at a Geneva childrenswear store.

Fountain 2017 by Bureau A

Occupying several parking spaces of Zurich's Pfingstweid car park, the urinal is composed of four large marble panels that rest on a wooden frame.

Fountain 2017 by Bureau A

The liquid from emptied bladders is channelled along the base onto a pothole filled with gravel and small plants.

Fountain 2017 by Bureau A

A neon light sticks out from the top right corner to serve as clear signage for night time visitors.



The car park itself is situated on the remains of an ancient common, and the urinal was prompted by discussions around the area's historic role as a shared space.

Fountain 2017 by Bureau A

"Public space needs to stay public, open and support debate and creative proposals of any kind, whether they are social, political or cultural," said the studio.

Fountain 2017 by Bureau A

"A contribution where people can meet, be revolted to whatever, play, drink, sleep, love. Anything should be possible within a public space."

Fountain 2017 by Bureau A

The Common Ground installations are hosted as part of the car park's ongoing Art Container project, which launched in June 2015 to commission and promote contemporary art in an independent and non-commercial exhibition space.

Fountain 2017 by Bureau A

Dutch designers Aandeboom recently proposed a rethink of the urinal with a tree-mounted design for Roskilde Festival, and Copenhagen studio UiWE suggested the Pollee urinal for women, which was also trialled at the event.

Fountain 2017 by Bureau A
Plans – click for larger image
  • Guest

    Can’t imagine the lordly Zurichois wanting to have anything to do with such a thing, pink marble or not, unless they’re absolutely busting, of course.

  • Adam

    Sponsored by the cops so they can fulfil their public indecency ticket quota.

  • bubble

    Better piss on plastic.

  • SteveLeo

    They’re just pissing money up the wall.

  • r

    We really needed yet another piece of built environment serving men only.

    • Leo Moriarty

      At least there’s no whinging about leaving the seat up.

  • IDRACULA

    There are ideas; there are good ideas… lame ideas seems to have prevailed in this case.

  • livid lili

    I love toilet innovation, but this is ugly, useless and pointless. And just once, I’d like to see something in public toilet design that’s not just another urinal. Not really handy if you’re a woman.

  • disqus_coASsKM1Oi

    Is this what designers go for? Importing slices of Portuguese hills to be sh*t on? Are you people serious? Unethical, whimsical, childish and selfish.

  • Shibby Wrinkle

    Looks like an inviting climbing structure for hapless children.

  • james

    For those who’ve always wanted to piss on the Barcelona pavilion.

  • tonyjohnsonjp

    If you really need to smell urine in a car park, come to China.

  • charles osawa

    Somebody’s going to definitely break that, or steal it.

  • Betty Burke

    Ugly, tacky, unnecessary… I much prefer your typical plastic cubicles. The pink marble just makes it even worse.

  • Jack White

    I like it. I think it’s a nice design and fits really well there.

    I do see the inequality part, for sure, a problem of it being much more acceptable for men to urinate in view of others. But I’m a guy and I would enjoy using it. I’d imagine women would like to be able to pee equally exposed and unjudged? If so how do we start that becoming an acceptable thing?

  • mdd

    Where do they wash their hands?