Pope-a-Potties Are Going In. 3,000 of Them.

But will that be enough?


Photo | Rob DiRienzo

In preparation for Popestock, crews have begun unloading and staging some 3,000 port-a-potties and 350 urinal stalls on and around the Ben Franklin Parkway. Some worry that won’t be enough.

That will be one stall for every 250 people, organizers said back in July. However, if the events draw around 1.5 million people as projected by the city, to meet that ratio they would need to have closer to 6,000 plastic boxes for people to do their business.

“It’s a weird topic, but it’s one that needs to be talked about,” Bianca Bethel, ESM Productions’ event manager told the Associated Press. “We don’t want to be that city where people leave saying, ‘I had no place to go to the restroom.'”

Bethel said they looked at papal visits in other countries as well as past presidential inaugurations, to determine how many port-a-potties would required.

A Royal Flush Inc. is charging $1.2 million for the job, Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput told NBC10. The company has provided potties for high-profile events like last year’s Super Bowl, Made in America, and the Mummers Parade.

They are being brought into the Parkway area gradually as crews set up video screens, lighting, and risers ahead of the Pope’s arrival.

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Photo | Rob DiRienzo