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Salt Lake City Removes Portable Restrooms For Homeless In Ballpark Neighborhood

A photo of the Smith's Ballpark entrance in Salt Lake City.
Wikimedia Commons
Salt Lake City installed portable restrooms across the street from the Ballpark in late July.

Salt Lake City has removed portable restrooms it installed in late July in the Ballpark neighborhood, just south of downtown, for people experiencing homelessness.

Mayor Erin Mendenhall said officials removed them when the city moved into the yellow, low-restriction phase of Utah's pandemic response.

“It was important while we were in the orange designation and all of our park restrooms were closed, libraries were closed, that we have restrooms available that were clean and safe,” Mendenhall said. “But after the city moved to the yellow designation we felt that it was a safe time and a good time to be able to close those restrooms in the ballpark.”

There are more than 30 public restrooms throughout the city, according to Mendenhall.

If the city has to close public restrooms again due to COVID-19 restrictions, she said it may re-deploy the portable locations in the Ballpark neighborhood.

Photo of two grey portable bathrooms surrounded by a chain link fence in a parking lot. Smith's Ballpark is across the street in the background.
Sonja Hutson
Two portable restrooms opened in late July for people experiencing homelessness across the street from Smith’s Ballpark in Salt Lake City.

Corrected: September 24, 2020 at 6:39 PM MDT
A previous version of this story misnamed the Yellow, low-restriction phase of the state's COVID-19 response plan.
Sonja Hutson is a politics and government reporter at KUER.
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