The Hush Post: If you are looking for a public toilet near you, you may just need to access Google Maps.
As per the Union Government’s directive, all cities have been asked to map public utilities like railway stations, hospitals, and even public toilets.
Heeding to this, the first initiative has been taken in Mumbai. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has recently completed mapping of 3,465 public toilets across Mumbai on Google Maps.
In addition to the location, Google Maps will also give details of the time till which they will remain open.
The 3,465 toilets include 800 public toilets, pay and use toilets, toilets handed over to NGOs and contractors for maintenance as also those at petrol pumps, state transport stops, railway stations, government offices and parks, as per a report in The Hindustan Times.
HT adds: Google Maps will show the nearest toilet, will give the timings till when they are open, the timing required to reach the spot and the shortest route with live traffic updates.
Speaking on the move a senior civic official added: “We have managed to tag most of the toilets. It was a time-bound project, and we needed it to be ready before the Swachch Sarvekshan. We had about two months to complete it.”
This is BMC’s second initiative to map toilets for internet users. Earlier in 2017, they had launched an android mobile application Mumbai Toilet Locator which mapped 800 public toilets. While still functional, the app only had over a thousand downloads. The civic body felt that the citizens’ response was low which is why they tagged it on Google Maps.
The advantage is that Google Maps can be opened on any smartphone and desktop. Says an official: “Tourists who don’t know about the Mumbai Toilet Locator app should also be able to find toilets on their phones. It’s simpler.”