Whether a city is launching a plan to reduce fatigue-related driving accidents, or architecture students decide to design and build experiential park bathrooms for their thesis project, rest stops provide a unique opportunity to design spaces where passing through means more than just a quick trip to le toilette. For drivers, hikers, and cyclists alike, these interesting and engaging architectural forms provide points of interest, scenic viewing platforms, areas for rest and reflection, gathering spots, and other spaces of rejuvenation for tired passersby.
Located between the Anglesea Road interchange and where the ring road joins the Princes Highway, these structures are part of the VicRoads Victorian Rest Area Strategy, which aims to reduce fatigue-related incidents by taking a holistic, strategic approach to rest stops across Victoria’s major roads. Consisting of male, female, and disabled toilets, along with a car shelter and picnic shelter, the project is entirely self-sufficient.
Concealed by a stack of logs, this golf course bathroom features a stainless-steel framed window that provides quite the view from le toilette. Inside, the dark stained wooden walls keep the space from feeling too cold or municipal.
Built in the roadside station of Yawatahama City, the restroom was arranged around a central courtyard complete with mandarin trees. Inside, the ceiling mimics the shape of a mandarin tree, cutting out the scenery of terraced fields outside.
Alongside a scenic tourist route, this toilet facility was part of an initiative to install observation platforms that provide stopping points and connections to existing points of interest. The clerestory windows provide nearly panoramic views of the mountains, creating a hybrid experience of nature and design.
This project is a part of the four related building projects in Perry County’s recreational park that Rural Studio created over the span of four thesis classes and five years. The bathroom facility provides three different “toilet experiences:” one toilet is a 50-foot “tall toilet,” the second is a “long toilet” that frames a tree at one end, and the third is a “mound toilet.”
Located beside the Atnbrufossen waterfall to the east of the Rondane Mountains, this rest stop and museum has an exhibition space and a functioning saw mill that is owned and run by the local community. Resonating with the cultural atmosphere and its natural surroundings, the exterior is clad in high-quality local pine with natural impregnation.
This colorful series of public toilets were designed according to the bends and folds of origami cranes. Constructed entirely from concrete, the 17 Hiroshima Park Restrooms come in three different shapes, but each one has its own unique color.
Located on selected scenic viewpoints, a system of 20 rest stops were designed for the new highway running from Azerbaijan to Turkey, through Georgia. The gigantic concrete structures shelter petrol filling stations, while the glass walls enclose supermarkets, farmers’ markets, and exhibit spaces for arts and crafts.