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Good Question: How Do Stadiums Decide On The Number Of Bathrooms?

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- More than 66,000 people are expected to come to U.S. Bank Stadium for this Sunday's Vikings game against the Packers, and there's a good chance most of them will have to use the restrooms.

Stewart from St. Paul asked: How do stadiums pick the number of bathrooms? Good Question.

Michele Kelm-Helgen is chair of the Minnesota Sports Authority. She says there's a lot of discussion about bathrooms among the stadium's design team.

"We designed it according to code, with probably some extras," she said.

For huge venues, Minnesota building code requires one toilet for every 60 women and one toilet or urinal for every 120 men. Architects design stadiums for more than just football games -- they assume the events will ultimately average half women, half men.

"We knew for Luke Bryan there were going to be more women, for Metallica there were going to be more men," Kelm-Helgen said.

Twenty years ago, there was generally a 1-to-1 toilet ratio, but when researchers counted the seconds in bathrooms at a basketball arena, they found men averaged 84 seconds while women averaged 153 seconds. Hence, the move toward better potty parity.

Now, the codes require three womens toilets for every two men's toilets or urinals. That's what they have for the almost 1,000 "fixtures" at U.S. Bank Stadium -- more than twice the number at the old Metrodome.

"[There are] no more troughs, which should be a good thing for the men," Kelm-Helgen said. "That was something everyone was glad about."

Architects say well-designed venues should not have lines. U.S. Bank Stadium officials hope that won't be the case on Sunday.

The stadium does have the ability to change some of their men's restrooms into women's restrooms when they know they'll have an events with more women. They haven't done it yet, but would expect to in the future.

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