By Facility Executive Staff
From the August 2018 Issue
In Spring 2018, Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) announced a pilot program of smart restrooms in one of Los Angeles International Airport’s (LAX) terminals. The patented technology in use helps passengers navigate busy bathrooms and lights the way for them in American Airlines’ Terminal 4.
LAX has implemented Tooshlights, a smart restroom traffic management system, that visually informs users which restroom stalls are occupied and which are available. This project also includes Infax, a data-driven provider of IT solutions for airports and other public venues. In this collaboration, Tooshlights provides Infax with real-time venue-specific data that allows airport officials to track the occupancy usage of restroom stalls.
“We’re incredibly excited to try out this new technology, which should help improve our guest experience and allow us to better monitor and service our restrooms,” said Barbara Yamamoto, chief experience officer at LAWA. “The desire for clean and available restrooms is consistently in the top ranks of what guests want at an airport, and this will help us provide a higher level of service to the traveling public and allow us to better meet our strategic goal of delivering facilities and guest experiences that are exceptional.”
According to an Airport Council International (ACI) Airport Service Quality (ASQ) Survey, the availability of washrooms/toilets is one of the top 10 most important items to all LAX guests in 2017. The LAX smart restroom pilot program of the Tooshlights system includes more than 20 restroom stalls, which work similarly to parking garage lights. Each unit consists of a smart latch and indicator light. When the stall is available, the light is green. When the stall is occupied, and the smart latch activated, the light turns red. There are also blue indicator lights for ambulatory stalls.
“The real-time data that we will be receiving through our new smart restroom technology will help us to respond quicker when issues occur, and gain base-line data for daily and weekly restroom usage, so we can better plan and deploy our resources, including custodians, and maintenance workers,” added Michael Christensen, deputy executive director of the facilities and maintenance group at LAWA. “Just like a physical traffic management system, these smart restrooms will allow us to do our job better and more efficiently.”
If this smart restroom pilot is successful, LAX expects to expand the use of smart restrooms in Terminal 4 and throughout the airport.
LAX is the fourth busiest airport in the world, second in the United States, and was named one of Skytrax’ 2017 Top 10 Most Improved Airports. LAX served more than 84.6 million passengers in 2017. LAX ranks 14th in the world and fifth in the U.S. in air cargo tonnage processed, with more than 2.2 million tons of air cargo valued at over $101.4 billion.
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