The Worst Damn Bathrooms in the Land: Ohio State's Bottom Five

By David Wertheim on June 6, 2020 at 11:20 am
Cockins Hall

The Best Damn Bathrooms in the Land is Eleven Warriors' necessary and hard-hitting quest to find the best places to go at The Ohio State University.

In my almost three years at Ohio State, I've had the pleasure of using restrooms all over our beautiful campus, from the river to High Street and Lane to King.

But not all bathrooms are created equally, even at The Ohio State University. Some have great natural light. Others have roomy stalls. And others are in prime locations suited for quick access and egress.

I've done the dirty work for you, and have put together a list of the five WORST bathrooms in academic and multi-use buildings on campus. It is time.


  • Cleanliness (50 points): Cleanliness is next to godliness.
  • Aesthetics (20 points): Is it inviting? Is it a pleasure to visit?
  • Size (10 points): How big is the bathroom? Does it provide handicap stalls?
  • Location (10 points): Campus bathrooms have to be easy to find.
  • Supply (10 points): Are paper towels, soap, and toilet paper adequately stocked? 

#5: Independence Hall

Featuring the largest lecture hall on campus with its 746 seat monstrosity, Independence Hall's only bathroom isn't really bad, it's just not even close to big enough.

Let's say for the sake of this piece that half of those 746 people are men. So that's 373. Now let's say that even just 10% of those men have to use the restroom before class. That's approximately 38. Now let's say that there's 10 minutes before class starts. That's 3.8 men/minute.

If my memory serves, there are five total stalls + urinals in this bathroom. That's not exactly a lot of wiggle room. What if 15% have to use the bathroom on a given day? Or what if some are running late and there's only seven minutes before class? With one restroom to service the entire building, space becomes an issue, quickly. 

Total: 74/100

42/50 15/20 1/10 8/10 10/10

#4: Hitchcock Hall First Floor

One of the flagship engineering buildings on campus, Hitchcock Hall's large auditorium features 640 seats. It's similar to Independence in that there is one bathroom on the first floor (that is fairly hard to find), serving hundreds of students. 

There are some significant differences in the two, however. As mentioned, Hitchcock's bathroom is significantly harder to find. In addition, it is less aesthetic and also less clean on a regular basis. It's just an "Independence Lite" but the Lite is much worse in this case. 

Total: 63/100

38/50 10/20 2/10 3/10 10/10

#3: Caldwell Lab

There are three CSE buildings on Ohio State's campus.

  • Dreese Lab- features most offices as well as a large lecture hall
  • Baker Systems- features computer labs used for classes, other classrooms/offices
  • Caldwell Lab- doubles as the Electrical Engineering building but also is the only public computer lab.

Caldwell Lab and Baker Systems are disgusting buildings. The monitors are dusty, the keyboards are greasy to the touch, and the buildings themselves seem like they need a good deep cleaning. It's so bad that there was a man literally living in Baker Systems with piss bottles back in 2014.

The bathrooms in Dreese and Baker Systems are actually not bad, so I'm not sure why the man felt the need to piss in a bottle, but Caldwell is a different story.

Despite the very clear signs throughout Caldwell 112 that say no eating or drinking, you'll see plenty of students with bags of chips or soft drinks. I've seen sushi meals, burritos, and plenty of other food scattered throughout the lab by students who just don't respect the space.

Speaking of respecting the space, these bathrooms are just as nasty as you'd think at Caldwell. They are small, dingy, and seem like they'd be more fit for a prison (which the CSE Department kind of is, so it all works out). 


Total: 58/100

30/50 5/20 7/10 6/10 10/10

#2: Hughes Hall Third Floor

This one won't be on the list for too long, as Ohio State announced a total remodel of the music school, after a $17 million donation from businessman and alum Ratmir Timashev. 

But, since it still exists, we have to talk about it. Hughes Hall is one of the worst buildings on campus, and seemingly hasn't been remodeled since it's opening in 1946. It does not have central air, and is basically crumbling away right in front of our eyes.

The bathrooms, as expected, are not much better. With a rusty-orange tint, the gross tile and mirrors look like they are beyond salvageable. The worst part, however, is the heat.

As the Hughes bathrooms fall on the east side of the building, the sun is absolutely brutal from morning until mid-afternoon. Even on winter days, the heat from the light alone is enough to basically create a greenhouse effect and suffocate you when you're just trying to do your business. I almost put this at No. 1. But it was pretty easy to find. I guess that's a win. 

Total: 51/100

30/50 5/20 2/10 6/10 8/10

#1: Cockins Hall First Floor

What a horrible bathroom. 

Cockins Hall, which houses the Ohio State department of statistics, is one of the math buildings on campus, all of which are severely depleted facilities in desperate need of a remodel. 

When you walk in to Cockins on an August or September day, it's no less than 1000 degrees. The metal in the bathroom is hot to the touch like an elementary school playground, and the horrible aesthetics amplify the terrible experience.

You may say, "Oh, don't worry. It can't be that bad in January or February when it's cold in Columbus." But it is. They must have the bathroom directly next to the boiler room, because it is still extremely hot in there. 

I mean, it's a bathroom. I guess.

Total: 49/100

30/50 5/20 2/10 2/10 10/10
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