Street peeing: Over 5,300 Parisians pay €68 after being caught with their pants down

Over 5,300 Parisians were stung with fines for urinating in the street in 2017, with city officials hoping a new set of eco-friendly urinals will make Paris cleaner.

Street peeing: Over 5,300 Parisians pay €68 after being caught with their pants down
Photo: JM/Flickr

People peeing on the street is an age-old problem in Paris – and it appears to have finally got the attention of authorities.

The City Hall has been busy slapping €68 fines on those caught with their pants down, with 5,381 people nabbed in 2017 alone. 

That marks a 165 percent increase in the number of fines doled out for the same violation in 2016. 

This increase is partly due to a crackdown on street-peeing, but is also thanks to the huge increase in the number of “civility police” working for the city, who now number 3,200 (up from just 96 in 2015). 

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo has spoken of the city’s “zero tolerance” approach to littering and street-peeing in the past, and is now carrying out experiments with new eco-friendly urinals, known as “Uritrottoir” (a blend of the verb uriner and the French word for pavement).

Three of these urinals have been installed across the city (near the Moulin Rouge, the Gare de Lyon, and the Jardin des Plantes). 

The urinals feature the usual basin for weeing into but also a pot of flowers to give a more pleasant look than the usual grey, overflowing street urinals that dot the Paris' black spots for street peeing (known as “pipi sauvage” in French). 

Photo: AFP

According to the creators it allows the needy to “Pisse in Peace.”

“People urinating on the streets of France is a serious problem,” inventor Victor Massip from the creators Faltazi told The Local.
The three urinals in Paris go with 450 public urinals around the city, half of which are open 24/7. 
Paris authorities are also hoping to develop more mobile solutions such as retractable toilets along the Canal Saint-Martin.

An experimental anti-peeing mirror has placed near a bar on rue Saint-Quentin in the 10th arrondissement, which is supposed to discourage men from relieving themselves by letting them see exactly what they are doing.

Paris however, has given up the anti-urine paint, which ricocheted the pee back onto the shoes of offenders. At €3,000 per square metre it proved just too expensive.
It's perhaps no surprise that Paris is working to clean up its image, with the Paris 2024 Olympics on the horizon.
And if you think Parisians have seemed a little more hesitant to litter lately, it could be down to the huge increase in the total number of fines handed out to Parisians in the past year. 

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There were 108,000 fines of €68 handed out in 2017, a 149 percent increase on the previous year. Almost 45,000 of these were for littering in public, while nearly 25,000 were for tossing cigarette butts. 

Now, to fix the dog poo problem…

READ ALSO: Could street urinals for women work in Paris?


Revealed: The fastest way to get across Paris

Car, moped, public transport, or electric bicycle - which means of transport is the quickest way to get across Paris?

Revealed: The fastest way to get across Paris

One intrepid reporter for French daily Le Parisien decided to find out. 

The challenge was simple. Which mode of transport would get the journalist from the heart of Fontenay-sous-Bois in the eastern suburbs to the newspaper’s office on Boulevard de Grenelle, west Paris, fastest?

Over four separate journeys, each one in the middle of rush hour, the electric bicycle was quickest and easiest. More expensive than conventional bikes, electric bikes do come with a government subsidy.

The journey was described as ‘pleasant and touristy’ on a dry but chilly morning going via dedicated cycle lanes that meant the dogged journalist avoided having to weave in and out of traffic.

It took, in total, 47 minutes from start to finish at an average speed of 19km/h, on a trip described as “comfortable” but with a caveat for bad weather. The cost was a few centimes for charging up the bike.

In comparison, a car journey between the same points took 1 hour 27 minutes – a journey not helped by a broken-down vehicle. Even accounting for that, according to the reporter’s traffic app, the journey should – going via part of the capital’s southern ringroad – have taken about 1 hr 12.

Average speed in the car was 15km/h, and it cost about €2.85 in diesel – plus parking.

A “chaotic and stressful” moped trip took 1 hour 3 minutes, and cost €1.30 in unleaded petrol.

Public transport – the RER and Metro combined via RER A to Charles-de-Gaulle-Étoile then Metro line 6 to the station Bir-Hakeim – took 50 minutes door to door, including a 10-minute walk and cost €2.80. The journey was described as “tiring”.

READ ALSO 6 ways to get around Paris without the Metro