I remember at one point in my career working in an old building that clearly needed to be renovated. But as those things go, funds are at times allocated for different projects on campus and priorities change.
Long story short, the building was not renovated but it was decided to renovate instead the bathrooms inside the building, the bottom floor one (no pun intended) receiving major cosmetic improvements first. So it happened that in a relatively short time span there came to exist beautiful titles, a kind of mosaic pattern, in a room that now echoed, and if I recall correctly the urinals and toilets were also exchanged; but I could be mistaken, because to me urinals and toilets for the most part look the same, as long as they are kept clean.
We had of course installed also, but this happened years later, a hand sanitizer station and also one of those containers that holds foamy soap in a tinted, plastic cube that immediately stops foaming the moment you get it onto your hands. In case any prospective academic bathroom remodelers are reading this, I believe it is possible to install these sanitary “add-ons” on old bathrooms that are still functional. No need to bring in the designer touches and tear out and re-install fixtures to keep clean.
What I found amusing and also highly disturbing upon the birth of the new bathroom in the old building was that when we gave tours to campus dignitaries, they would inevitably be shown the magnificent bathroom. This was done, if I recall correctly, by orders from higher up (no pun intended), and needless to say, this kind of showcasing did not pass the smell test with some of us old-fashioned academics.
How would learning outcomes have been improved with this new wondrous toilet that cost quite a bit to install in the old “sinking” building with classrooms and faculty offices in need of renovation? Why was the decision made to renovate a bathroom that would make the rest of the building look terrible? Was this some sort of ingenious plan, putting the bathroom before the classroom, and funding by decision makers would thus follow?
I do not know, for my business was and is academics. But I would be curious to hear from others, including any photos you might wish to post in response, if you have experienced on your campus any renovation or innovation projects in a vein similar to the wondrous academic bathroom which I have brought to light. Let’s put a stop to hemorrhoidal “thinking” and planning!