The Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport installed seven dog bathrooms last year. One for each and every concourse. It wasn’t until recently, nearly a full year later, that airport officials revealed to the public that the canine restrooms cost $3.9 million.
Airport administrators were quick to point to the complexities of building inside a 24-hour facility in defense of the ludicrously high price tag. They said construction was limited to overnight hours and that existing facilities had to be torn down to make room for the new doggie loos. What existing facilities? Bathrooms for humans? Check-in counters? Maintenance closets? Air-traffic control towers?
According to a Fox News article, the Federal Department of Transportation (FDOT) mandates that large airports have Service Animal Relief Areas (SARAs). A spokesperson for the airport told Fox News: “In order for ATL to be in compliance with federal ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) standards, these relief areas had to be built.” The total cost of building the canine cans was supposedly absorbed through “airport funding,” not taxpayer dollars, and is reimbursable through PFCs (“Passenger Facility Charges”).
Well, OMG, WTF and BS.
I have seen several pictures of these designated doggie doo-doo dens. These “relief areas” are replete with artificial turf and fake fire hydrants, among other amenities. Seriously. Although I didn’t see any bidets, so French Poodles are apparently being discriminated against.