As promised by Commissioner Randy Leonard's office earlier this year, a Portland Loo—it'll be the sixth one open for business—is finally under construction in the South Park Blocks. There's a hole in the ground, and some exposed pipes, marking the spot on SW Columbia just north of SW Park.
- Denis C. Theriault
- Yes, that's a hole in the ground. And yes it would be rude to poop in it before Loo is actually installed. Just saying!
The location—the first one that's both west of Naito Parkway and south of NW Couch—kinda/sorta fills in a gap in public toilet coverage. But as we also reported, it might be one of the last Loos in a long while for this, or any, part of town. (Which is bad news for anyone who's ever stumbled into the Starbucks at, say, the very centrally located Pioneer Courthouse Square only to realize there's no place to go except an empty grande cup.)
Dan Saltzman's office, come July 1, is taking over the Loo program—putting it under the auspices of the Bureau of Environmental Services, which handles sewers and sewage, instead of Leonard's Water Bureau. And the carefully chosen message from Saltzman's team is that he'll support only maintaining the Loos the city currently has (or has on the books, ready to go) when he takes over.
So after this one goes up, Portland might see only two more: the long-promised Loo in the Pearl's PDC-funded Fields Park, and the Loo that Leonard craves for the Eastbank Esplanade, near the firefighters memorial outside the rebuilt Station 21. Here's the Loo program's website.