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Public bathrooms close to Indianapolis’ Old City Hall closed because of maintenance



Indianapolis, Indiana – Near the Old City Hall in downtown Indianapolis, the temporary public restrooms on Alabama and New York streets were put in towards the end of February. However, they were closed on Wednesday for maintenance and upgrading.

In order to fix the public restroom as soon as possible, according to Andrew Merkley, administrator of the local government’s Division of Homelessness Policy and Eviction Prevention for the Office of Public Health and Safety. When they will reopen is unknown.

The Old City Hall restroom is a part of the city’s attempts to offer the people without shelter safe and respectable restrooms and hand washing stations, according to Merkley.

Until then, he said, anyone in need of a public restroom can use one of the two facilities at the SPARK on the Circle pocket park, which is located in the southwest corner of Monument Circle. Many people we spoke to in the neighborhood without shelter at the former municipal hall weren’t aware that this was an alternative.

George Williams, an Indianapolis resident experiencing homelessness, said it has been difficult without the facility. “They use this washroom all day. All morning. All afternoon. All evening. One day, I was sleeping on this area here and I woke up and it was locked. It’s been tough. Real tough. It’s hard.”

Thomas Bridgeforth said he is no longer experiencing homelessness but is frustrated at the lack of available facilities. “When you’ve got to use it and you can’t get to that one. I’m not trying to be a dog, people, but that’s what I become.”

Both men agreed that there were problems with the public restroom.

Williams said, “It was bad. I think this is the reason why they close the washroom. It was abused. They abused the washroom.”

Bridgeforth said, “We have a problem with the water thing here because we can’t clean our hands. We need to be able to clean our hands.”


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