Target Field promises plenty of potties, especially for the ladies


Minnesotans are all giddy about nabbing season or single tickets for the new Target Field when the Twins kick off their season there in 2010. But who is thinking about how much of the game they might miss waiting to take a leak?

As new sports stadiums and fields debut around the country, one element of construction is gaining more importance: the number of restrooms available to fans and how to divide the male/female ratio.

It's not always as easy as you think. How does Target Field stack up?

The New York Times had a front-page story about potty ratios at stadiums. All women know the pain of ridiculously long lines at any place with a crowd and finally architects are listening.
Studies show that women take about twice as long as men in the restroom. The reasons vary, from the obvious (the need to secure themselves inside a stall, shed more clothes and use toilet paper) to the not-so-obvious (menstrual cycles and the increased likelihood, compared to men, of ushering small children).

Groups including the American Restroom Association and the World Toilet Organization view quick access to clean public toilets as no laughing matter. People with medical problems, including bladder or bowel dysfunction, may not be able to wait. Long waits can exacerbate other issues, including urinary-tract infections.

For years, women have most dealt with the consequences, if not the indignity, of waiting in long lines.

Target Field, which can seat approximately 40,000 people, will have a total of 667 bathroom fixtures. That's 187 more, or a 39 percent increase, from the Metrodome despite a more than 15,000 decrease in seating capacity (28 percent).

Target Field is making sure to cater to the ladies. Of the 187 new bathroom fixtures, 145 of them are for women. But there's good news for the dudes out there too: Target Field will not have any trough-style urinals. Twins officials say they are no longer up to code.

While it would make sense to have double the facilities for women, sports games are traditionally male dominated. Perhaps the greatest moment would be seeing men try to patiently wait for their turn after chugging a beer in the stands.

Twins officials say there was no real science in their numbers. Target Field has a small footprint and designers tried to cram as many bathrooms in as they could, keeping in mind a hefty increase for women. Either way, think of it as a whole new selection of places to have stranger sex during a sports game.

Here are some comparisons of other potty ratios (male numbers include urinals and toilets):

Target Field, 40,000 seats

Total fixtures: 667

Women's fixtures: 401

Men's fixtures: 266

Yankee Stadium, 52,325 seats

Total fixtures: 765

Women's fixtures: 369

Men's fixtures: 396

Unisex fixtures: 78

Citi Field, 45,000 seats

Total fixtures: 725

Women's fixtures: 374

Men's fixtures: 351

PNC Park (Pittsburgh), 38,000 seats

Total fixtures: 527

Women's fixtures: 273

Men's fixtures: 254

AT&T Park (San Francisco), 41,500 seats

Total fixtures: 333

Women's fixtures: 182

Men's fixtures: 151