When technology and (lack of) toilets collide.
The maps are intended to shed light on the amount of individuals living homeless in San Francisco. Wong created the maps using a city database that organizes telephone complaints to the Department of Public Works about human poop and urine.
For her impressive (albeit sh-tty) effort, Wong won a prize at work. She then donated a portion of the money won to a project called Lava Mae that makes mobile showers and toilets available to the homeless via a decommissioned city bus.
“There’s not much choice other than the street when a homeless person needs a bathroom,” Wong said of the results of her project. “It’s pretty clear where the need is.”
“I grew up in the Bay Area,” the web developer added. “San Francisco has a reputation as a city that offers lots of services for the homeless. But I realized there’s so much more we should be doing, like providing toilets.”
The maps show a large feces concentration in northern San Francisco as well as in the neighborhood of Haight-Ashbury.
Between June and November of last year, over 5,000 excrement complaints were made to the Public Works department, the majority of them unsurprisingly located in a downtown area of the city called the Tenderloin where there exists a concentration of homeless shelters.
Currently, the official number of homeless in San Francisco sits at 7,500, though it’s likely closer to 10,000, according to service providers.
To view the map, visit Wong’s website.