Stossel: $2 Million Bathroom

By Grover Koelpin 100 comments

Here it is! This little building is a $2 million dollar bathroom $2 million dollars? I had to check it out. I was expecting gold plated fixtures. It’s just a toilet, a couple urinals, 2 sinks. $2 million dollars? Do the people who use the park know what taxpayers paid for their bathroom? What do you think this cost? A couple thousand. $70,000? Approximately $100,000 maybe They spent $2 million dollars For this? Unbelievable. Wow Wow You could buy a nice house here for $2 million dollars. For that price, yeah, you could buy a big house here You can! This nearby house was advertised for much less. It has 6 bedrooms! In the millions, for this? This is ridiculous. Where’s the money go? Good question. Everything costs more when government builds it. Washington, D.C.’s Visitor Center was supposed to cost $265 million, it ended up costing $621 million. The Veterans Affairs medical center near Denver was projected to cost $590 million. Now they estimate $1.7 billion. Government spends more because every decision is tied up in endless rules. Minority outreach. Wheelchair access. Zoning rules. And much more. Your department puts out a statement current estimate to build a new bathroom is 3 million dollars It is now approaching in some cases going over 3 million. Mitchell Silver is New York’s Parks Commissioner. This is the most expensive market in the world. So $2 million was a good deal here? $2million was a good deal. We built these comfort stations to last. But you can buy whole houses in that neighborhood for less than what you spent on this bathroom I hear that point often and If you look at the material we use compared to a home these are very, very durable material. That’s nice. But this bathroom is made of durable materials too. It’s so beautiful that a newspaper said it might be the fanciest in New York. Yet it cost one fifth as much as much. Why? Well, it’s in nearby Bryant Park, and Bryant Park is privately managed. Bryant Park built one with just as many sinks and toilets for a fifth the price Bryant Park did a renovation. When we build our comfort stations we do it from the ground up. But why? Why’d they knock down the old one down? It just looks like the same thing. Commissioner Silver says this has to be especially sturdy, because… We’re going to expect thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of visitors in that facility over its life cycle. But privately run Bryant Park gets more use. No comparison. It’s so busy people wait in line to get in. Yet another reason government work costs more is that government pays more. We pay prevailing wage. Prevailing wage? Prevailing wage. Union wage. This is a city that does believe strongly in labor and they want to make sure that people get paid prevailing wage. Prevailing wage turns out to mean union wages. Sometimes more than 100 dollars an hour. That makes everything cost more. And when we watched the workers didn’t seem to work very hard. The final reason this so much is that it took years to build it. It took less time to build the Empire state building. We’ve now saved 5 months out of what used to be 4 years, 5 years for a project. now doing them 3 years, in some cases under. So we shaved 5 years off. Whoop dee do. So it’s 5 years, 4 ½ years? That’s still terrible We’re actually 3 years and now we just finished one of our projects in under 3 years. Why does it take you 3 years to build a bathroom? We have a process that includes design, procurement and construction. But so does the private sector Ours because it’s a public project we believe very strongly in engaging the public, “Engaging the public” means things like
the city planning department’s “uniform land use review procedure.” Try doing something quickly while following these rules. Clearly the private sector does not have to go through the same process. And this is a good thing, the public process? All these meetings? Oh yes it’s a good thing. That’s a ridiculous amount of money. One little building $2 million dollars That’s government at work.



Oct 10, 2018, 7:52 pm Reply

Should of just got porta potties….

Clint Arnold

Nov 11, 2018, 7:33 am Reply

Does this guy have a drinking game with himself? No way he believes all that bullshit

Sean Moore

Nov 11, 2018, 9:48 am Reply

That black guy represents every misguided thing that's wrong with government.

Rob’s Noize

Nov 11, 2018, 1:20 am Reply

Silver's has NO idea what he's talkin' about!! NONE!! IDIOT POS!!!🖕😝😝🖕 Typical Beaurocrat Waste of AIR, Money & Time!!!🖕😝😝🖕POS!! GOD HELP AMERICA!!

Heru- deshet

Nov 11, 2018, 11:33 am Reply

Materials to build rest rooms = $75,000.
Labor = $300,000.
Red Tape = $1,625,000.

Kaleb Bruwer

Nov 11, 2018, 6:37 am Reply

This guy is proud that he finished a puzzle in 4.5 years when the box said 5 to 7 years.


Nov 11, 2018, 6:31 pm Reply

I'd find the head of the zoning board and just use their driveway as a bathroom. Save the city millions.

john Paschalis

Dec 12, 2018, 8:34 am Reply

That idiot would be fired if ran a business. What Bull


Dec 12, 2018, 5:28 pm Reply

Bullshit about the costs, they drive them up tobl8ne pockets, has nothing to do with red tape.


Dec 12, 2018, 3:50 pm Reply

puppet nigga is a fuckin corrupt to the core…


Dec 12, 2018, 5:18 pm Reply

When will you learn – politicians get away with paying off their friends, relatives and campaign contributors by not directly putting money into their bank accounts but rather by awarding them fat, over-priced, over-budget sweetheart deals. From the lowest school board contracts in the tiniest towns all the way to the governor's mansion, this is how politicians are bought and sold – they peddle our taxed paychecks into the hands of thieves.

Noah Rutan

Dec 12, 2018, 10:03 am Reply

And people want to give them more money hahahahahaha

neil rutan

Dec 12, 2018, 12:30 pm Reply

The people who build these things for the government know, the longer it takes the more, they get paid. That is why the thing took more the 2 years to build. I see this crap on a day to day basis watching workers just sitting at a work site doing as little as possible to milk as much money out of a job as possible.

Philip Heart

Jan 1, 2019, 2:41 am Reply

To be fair the mortar is made out of ground up pearls and diamonds.

The Thing

Jan 1, 2019, 12:12 pm Reply

Cost of the Building (raw):350k
Bribe dues: 1million
Profits to Share between officials: 650K
A two million dollar toilet: Priceless!
Just my opinion


Jan 1, 2019, 6:36 pm Reply

imagine if it is a transgender bathroom 14 years 8 millions


Jan 1, 2019, 3:28 pm Reply

desperate attempt at gentrification


Jan 1, 2019, 7:47 am Reply

100 dollars an hour? US of A is doomed I say.

Forex Hacker

Jan 1, 2019, 12:06 pm Reply

Check DIs OUt


Jan 1, 2019, 3:12 pm Reply

Private industry has an incentive to spend the least amount possible.
Government's incentive is to spend the most it can.


Jan 1, 2019, 4:15 am Reply

Excuse me why do you need it to "Durable"? Are people shooting at it with anti-tank weapons?!

Ryan Doherty

Jan 1, 2019, 7:08 pm Reply

Can Stossel saying "Whoop dee do" at 3:38 be a meme?


Jan 1, 2019, 10:53 am Reply

What happens to all the defense money? Theyre actual, literal, crooks. It's a scheme, just like mafia.

lizzy brock

Jan 1, 2019, 6:08 pm Reply

Prevailing wage is such a joke. You are paid significantly more to do significantly less, where you work 10x harder in the public sector to get it done fast & efficiently.

Todd Bernhard

Feb 2, 2019, 8:10 pm Reply

Ha-ha, you suck, New York!! Wait, we do that stupid shit where I live too?!? Shit.

Todd Bernhard

Feb 2, 2019, 8:14 pm Reply

People still shit on your sidewalks and the city smells like piss, I want to punch that smug asshole who is so proud of the tax payers getting fleeced…the death of a city one tax dollar at a time.

Georgetta Pullen

Feb 2, 2019, 1:02 am Reply

And we are suppose to give government our money

keagan mark

Feb 2, 2019, 2:10 am Reply

i work in the trades in the private sector, a building like that work take 2 to 4 weeks to build depending in how much work has to be done around it. the longest part is the first 3 steps, building is the fast part.
1. design
2. approval
3. permits
4. build


Feb 2, 2019, 1:57 pm Reply

If only Ron Swanson was in charge of NYC's Parks department.

Orlando Garza

Feb 2, 2019, 8:32 pm Reply

That is an expensive poop poop house.It is so elegant I would hate to take a poop in it.They use hundred dollars bills for toilet paper.

Nerd Boy

Feb 2, 2019, 11:35 pm Reply

this happens all the time in Canada… >_<

IND ItsNotDenon

Feb 2, 2019, 7:41 pm Reply

Making things wheelchair accessible seems like something that shouldn't be seen as an unreasonable cost

pollitical junkie

Feb 2, 2019, 5:03 am Reply

This is incredible! The way that scumbag is trying to justify a 2 million dollar bathroom! And people are so stupid they believe it! Omg. Anybody who has ever worked in construction knows that's crazy


Feb 2, 2019, 4:22 am Reply

That is freaking freaking I want to swear but I won’t!

Victor Mendonça da Silva

Feb 2, 2019, 3:17 pm Reply

This happens all the time in Brazil, the work is intentionally over-cost, they local government must have some shade agreement with the builder, money to campaign in exchange for Juicy public contracts

Ethan Winters

Feb 2, 2019, 5:05 am Reply

It took seven years for the government to build a bathroom? And people want the government to run healthcare? No thanks i’ll stick to my private insurance!


Feb 2, 2019, 7:21 am Reply

This interview cracks me up. This guy has to keep his charade up or his gig is up. Private sector will always be superior to government sector in every aspect.

peter primes

Feb 2, 2019, 12:19 am Reply

This whole system needs to be burned to the ground. Although think about all the misgotten income nationally that would be lost if we actually accounted for every tax dollar spent like a Private Corp. would do


Feb 2, 2019, 9:35 pm Reply

This reeks of embezzlement.

Clay Hackney

Mar 3, 2019, 2:50 am Reply

4 years? You can build a 4 bedroom house in 5 months.


Mar 3, 2019, 10:20 am Reply

Cash grabbing, anti American insurgents corroding our 🇺🇸 values while smiling and saying things like "engaging the public" and "prevailing wage". Somebody audit this clown before he's on the next episode of American Greed.

Conrad Gifford

Mar 3, 2019, 11:41 pm Reply

Typical story when public unions are involved or a private company gets a kick back. My old hoa did similar stuff while renovating our elevators. They over spent and only renovated one elevator and constantly broke down.


Mar 3, 2019, 5:51 am Reply

Typical politician… this stubborn knucklehead won't admit there's anything wrong with how they waste tax payers money.


Mar 3, 2019, 9:43 am Reply

3:40 whoop dee do


Mar 3, 2019, 2:43 pm Reply

Great place for public sex I suppose. 😒


Mar 3, 2019, 3:58 am Reply

Politicians … giving out contracts. So moral of the story … always lick a politician's arse. They will give you something nice in return. Unless you are just a voter, then you just get crap.


Mar 3, 2019, 12:39 pm Reply

You mean to tell me these workers are being payed 100$/per hour? Thats union robbery at work.

zombie soul-eater

Mar 3, 2019, 3:10 am Reply

evrey person who wants the government to give more social services and higher taxes should see this video—- i worked for a small city in Texas– (cant imagine what it would be like in a democratic state!) it is utterly mind boggling the bureaucracy and regulations,rules and paperwork everything requires-as a maintenance person i probably spent 75% of my day just filling in paperwork then actual work – just a small example of how insane anything government works— we get our money from sales tax– therefore we cant buy anything with sales tax-so hours and hours setting up accounts,paperwork,calling accounting…. anyhow we needed masonry drill bit– i found 1 for 250$ went to the store, but apparently our account expired.-so if we bought it we wold have to pay sales tax — (25$?ish).. so my boss made some phone calls and found someone else selling it for 400$ without sales tax… so we went and bought the same exact bit for 400$- because thats the rules,bureaucracy and regulations of the agency—emm don't mind either the entire 8 hours me and my-partner spent and hours my boss spent trying to buy the same thing…
yes this video clearly highlights— if a normal company or person builds,buys something it will cost 200k$—- if government buys,builds something it costs 2 mil$$ —- please vote less taxes and smaller government.

Słowiański Żołnierz

Mar 3, 2019, 8:23 pm Reply

This is called government corruption. Don't know how people don't see that

Apple Tree

Apr 4, 2019, 4:08 pm Reply

Which politicians and which contractor had a nice little agreement? Somebody walked away with a little extra jingle in their pocket. Union only workers at what kind of wage?!? What a horrible joke on taxpayers. The guy who defends this is disgusting.


Apr 4, 2019, 2:27 am Reply

When I saw that comparisson with the Empire State I could help start laughing. However it didn't last long. As soon as I remember that this was real life my laughter stopped and it was replaced with a sense of hopelessness.


Apr 4, 2019, 12:41 am Reply

We all know why…move on

Creative Rage Music

Apr 4, 2019, 5:23 pm Reply

Sounds like somebody is getting a nice Kick Back – Greenfeld is renovating many parks with nothing wrong with them in Brooklyn NY how much does it cost?

Mackenzie Karkheck

Apr 4, 2019, 12:05 pm Reply

The man is a well trained bullshit artist.

Mohammad Sagor

Apr 4, 2019, 12:52 am Reply

169 liberals disliked this video….as if like they wants the govt to spend more on this bathroom

Baruch Cohen

Apr 4, 2019, 2:09 am Reply

Sick to my stomach. Welcome to Liberal Amerikkka.

john knowing

Apr 4, 2019, 8:29 am Reply

I own a construction Co for 35 years Lets start off with what an ugly looking structure!!! I ran ruff numbers for materials for the whole structure No more then $75,000 in materials In reahap we do 1/3 materials 2/3 labor which to build that no more then $ 225.000 Excluding Blue prints.permits etc., Normally for that small size a few thousand for drawings and add permits SO WTF the rest of the 1.775 Million GO!!!! Kick backs !!!!!!

john knowing

Apr 4, 2019, 8:34 am Reply

Also whats scary is the mixed black guy says a couple thousands


Apr 4, 2019, 10:08 am Reply

i hate the government

Dogs Sing

Apr 4, 2019, 3:55 am Reply

Even with all the plumbing underneath, digging work, etc, that shouldn't exceed 100k. You know someone got BIG kickbacks.

Rodrigo Torres

Apr 4, 2019, 3:16 pm Reply

Its theft plain and simple. In my town they update a train station stop and charge 17 million. what we got is 1 million dollar update, so what happen to the rest of the money?

B Lo

Apr 4, 2019, 3:58 pm Reply

$2,000,000 for a $50k restroom= $1,000,000 for unions & $950,000
paid back to democrat campaigns by the unions. Those are your tax dollars! Its TAX LAUNDERING! Plus union workers are required to vote for democrats.This totally corrupt circle of payoffs is legal how?
Is there anyone that doesn't see how this works? In 1930's Detroit, Ford had 90k workers. By 1960 unions had driven out 60k of those & yet Detroit still had the highest household income of any US city, w/ blacks making $.95/$1.00 whites made. Then came the "civil rights" movement followed by violent black riots which scared the whites right out of the city.
In just 43 years of democrat rule Detroit went from the richest US city to the largest city bankruptcy in US history at $20 billion in red.
Electing leaders is always a choice between the lesser of two evils, but democrats are always the greater evil. Detroit is your perfect example. Ran for over 40yrs by a completely democrat, majority black city gov't & it was taken from the greatest US city & now ranks, out of 551 US cities as the worst. How could anyone ever vote democrat ever again????????😱

Manuel Delgado

Apr 4, 2019, 9:47 am Reply

Holy shit I can finally eat off the toilet bowl. 2 million toilets should be cleaned enough

Gungho 2001

Apr 4, 2019, 6:23 am Reply



May 5, 2019, 8:21 pm Reply

So I am giving 1/4 of my paycheck to support bullshit like this constantly. Why should I even work when my money goes to people being lazy and trying to manage my cash.


May 5, 2019, 1:54 am Reply

What is the point of hiring union workers wages $100/hr when liberals open border policies could get Mexicans to do the work for $5 an hour.

Jonathan Vega

May 5, 2019, 2:35 am Reply

The sad thing is that commissioner couldn't see how ridiculous he sounded. Denial perhaps?

Daniel M.

May 5, 2019, 3:12 am Reply

Isn't New York in debt? Like…. a lot!


May 5, 2019, 1:58 pm Reply

Everything sold to the government is exorbitant in price. So much corruption, just look at the Republican party's cocaine Mitch.

josh simpson

Jun 6, 2019, 12:56 pm Reply

🤦‍♂️ omg….

Pavel Yakovlev

Jun 6, 2019, 2:00 am Reply

Rejoice commrades, I mean, my progressive friends! Isn't it great that the government is wasting taxpayers' dollars by overpaying unproductive workers? But then again, that's why we have progressive taxes–so that we can waste rich peoples' money!

Christopher S.

Jun 6, 2019, 10:45 pm Reply

It took 7 years to build a shit house in the park and they paid 2 million dollars for it. And whats worse the spineless department head thought that was a good deal..


Jun 6, 2019, 2:34 pm Reply

Paying off political cronies with taxpayer money is as old as……………………..

Alex Bourgeault

Jun 6, 2019, 10:08 pm Reply

Weird how stossel sounds like hes acting in some but he sounds legitimately mad in this one


Jul 7, 2019, 3:52 am Reply

3:39 WHOOPDY Fuckin do

J Can du

Aug 8, 2019, 12:42 pm Reply

WHAT ?……THE ……..FUCK ?????

J Can du

Aug 8, 2019, 12:44 pm Reply

The system is hoplessly jewish

The Dark Knight

Sep 9, 2019, 5:37 am Reply

Durable materials.


They lie and cheat all the fucking time.

They build garbage at incredibly high prices and then they increase our taxes so they can THROW more money into the pit.

Just to fuck us over.

The entire system is designed to FUCK YOU OVER a hundred times.


The Dark Knight

Sep 9, 2019, 5:42 am Reply

They build the fucking empire state building in ONE YEAR.

It took them 7 years to build a fucking toilet.

Makes sense.

pm pc

Sep 9, 2019, 8:57 pm Reply

bathroom cams

R. C.

Sep 9, 2019, 1:17 pm Reply

This Silver guy is full of S%$t

Kymmberly Gail

Sep 9, 2019, 4:26 am Reply

this guys should be an embarrassment to the citizens who created this foolish irresponsible system. He is actually smiling as he defends wasting taxpayer dollars. There is so much that is sickening about his whole mindset – the mindset of the typical bureaucrat … NO dude.. it is NOT OK that it took 7 years and 2 million dollars to build a bathroom.. how stupid do you think we are?

Edward Warwick

Oct 10, 2019, 11:50 pm Reply

Two million dollar bathroom? You could build a huge house for two million dollars. Who stole the money?

Edward Warwick

Oct 10, 2019, 11:53 pm Reply

New York being the most expensive market is a bad joke. You can rent a super small one room apartment for ten times as much as you could rent a multi room apartment ten times bigger in the mid west. Why would you want to live in New York City? You just don't know any better.

Edward Warwick

Oct 10, 2019, 11:56 pm Reply

We have a process, design, building, three years and only two million dollars for an average road side stop bathroom. Only in New York is such gross over spending and inefficiency accepted as being fine. Fools get what they deserve when they keep voting in the incompetent under achievers.


Oct 10, 2019, 7:16 pm Reply

They are obviously in with this on the contractors and getting kick backs. This guy is lying through his fucking teeth.

Aman Chauhan

Oct 10, 2019, 8:32 am Reply

The Dems can spend money in a 2million dollar bathroom but not wall?

Scott Hedrick

Oct 10, 2019, 6:10 pm Reply

The Works Progress Administration built a beautiful toilet in the Petrified Forest. Black granite, goldish looking trim, truly as work of art. It has 28" doors, and the door frame is part of what is holding up the roof. Inside, it is a marvel of modern handicap access. Of course, if you are outside, you will first somehow have to open and hold the door, throw yourself out of your wheelchair, fold it and drag it inside, crawl in yourself then climb back into your chair to wheel over to the handicap toilet. The doors cannot be widened without disassembling the roof. It wasn't built to handicap specifications and even now cannot reasonably be accessed by people in wheelchairs. So why was money spent on such accessibility?

Ada Li

Oct 10, 2019, 4:11 am Reply

Which park is this bathroom in?

Letty Guerra

Oct 10, 2019, 11:24 pm Reply

When John Stossel asked that government blood sucking leach if their government process was a good thing? He answered Oh YES its a Good Thing! I bet its a good thing! ChaChing! I saw dollar signs in this vampires eyes. He was thinking of all the kickback dollars floating into his wallet!!!

Schad N. Freude

Oct 10, 2019, 3:01 pm Reply

I worked at a state agency whose priorities on purchasing is not cost or quality, but to buy first and foremost from a minority owned business. We end up with ridiculously expensive, weird off-brand office supplies of low quality. And it's just systemic. The system exists to be exploited.

Andrew Skipsey

Nov 11, 2019, 8:23 pm Reply

One fifth of $2m is not $271,000, unless you're grossly overstating the cost of the bathroom from (what would be) $1,355,000, or just simply failed to divide $2,000,000 by $271,000 – a fraction much closer to one eighth.

Mar Blox

Nov 11, 2019, 6:58 pm Reply

Just put Boo Boos in charge of EVERYTHING. The world will be a better place. LOL.

Falcon 1

Nov 11, 2019, 1:07 am Reply

The list of reasons for the cost was as long as Al Capone's rap sheet. With all the doublespeak that guy was giving I would have mistaken him for Al Capone.


Nov 11, 2019, 12:06 pm Reply

Dude they have sht in place to prevent corruption. I get the regulations and red tape but that's just insane. It reminds me of our Philippine roads here, for the entire term of an official there's NOT ONE project to be seen, but once elections rolls in you'll see a bunch of new roads freshly made😂🤦

James Muecke

Nov 11, 2019, 10:16 pm Reply

I am convinced that no government should ever be allowed to own one square foot of land, which also means no buildings. It is just as true that no government has any business being in business. There is a very important reason for these two essential requirements. When government owns property or business, the government's interest in the property and business will push justice to the back seat — always. Yet, justice is why government exists. Justice is the reason of state. The hope of justice has to be protected. Government cannot protect that hope when it takes on all kinds of other interests.


Dec 12, 2019, 4:28 am Reply

😂 is u fukin serious

Ian Cochrane

Dec 12, 2019, 2:57 pm Reply

This guy is so full of shit he is has turned brown.


Dec 12, 2019, 1:27 am Reply

I'd bet that when Commissioner Silver needs work done on his personal home that he pays for out of his own pocket, he goes down to Home Depot, and hires a truck full of day-labor illegals. And he definitely doesn't pay them "prevailing wage".

Spending $2million over 3 years to build a bathroom is easy to do when you are using OPM (Other People's Money)…

andy shelly

Dec 12, 2019, 3:27 pm Reply

yea i am retired but i guess i would work for 100 $ an hour , dosen,t everyone make that .

Leave a Reply