Public urinators of San Francisco should be careful the next time they think of taking a tinkle on a wall in the city. The city’s Public Works team have painted nine walls with super-hydrophobic pee-repelling paint that will deflect your urine right back on you.
In an attempt to clean the alleys and walls and keep them urine-free, the city has taken to some sever — and arguable hilarious — measures. While only nine walls are capable of punishing urinating culprits with their own pee, more walls will be painted.
“We are piloting it to see if we can discourage people from peeing at many of our hot spots,” said Public Works Director Mohammed Nuru to SFGate.com. “Nobody wants to smell urine. We are trying different things to try to make San Francisco smell nice and look beautiful.”
While the walls do not explicitly warn people from their liquid-deflecting ways, they do have a sign that advises against using the wall in lieu of a toilet. “Hold it! This wall is not a public restroom. Please respect San Francisco and seek relief in an appropriate place,” reads the sign.
“The team that did the testing, they were excited because the liquid bounces back more than we thought it would,” said Nuru. “Anything we can do to deter people is a good thing.”
If these measures sound extreme, know that public urination is a chronic issue in the city of San Francisco. While urinating in public has been illegal since 2002 with a fine up to $500, the issue still persists. The cost of painting each wall costs the city a couple hundred dollars for each surface but the price is worth it if it discourages the public from urinating on them.