In the American films and serials there are laundry rooms, which local residents enjoy with enviable constancy: there they not only erase, but also get acquainted. Where did this come from? What did not please the washing machines?
Services for washing and ironing linen appear in the West as early as the end of the XIX century. It was not an expensive pleasure: the work was done by specially hired personnel, and the delivery of the order was carried out by mail. About to come somewhere to wash your underwear yourself, there was no question.
During the Great Depression, there was a need for cheap laundries for the general public. The first public laundry, based on the principle of self-service, was opened in 1934 in Fort Worth, Texas. Although initially there were only four electric washing machines in the laundry, it quickly became popular and fully paid for the owner’s expenses.
“Laundry Palace”, 1924.
In such boxes, people received laundry from laundry in New York. 1929
The high public need for public laundry and the relatively low cost of opening them predetermined the mass emergence of self-service laundries in the 30s and 40s. Although as Americans improve their living standards, many Americans begin to buy their own washing machines, the practice of using public laundries is widespread in the US so far. What is the reason?
First, Americans are close to the idea of saving: saving water, electricity and space in homes. Laundry services are cheap, you can pay for washing either with coins or with special payment cards.
Secondly, many landlords prohibit installing a washing machine for people who rent their homes. Property owners are afraid of leaks and short circuits. Therefore, the main clients of public laundries are those who can not wash in a removable dwelling. However, quite wealthy Americans periodically use laundry services, coming here several times a year to wash large things: blankets, pillows, bedspreads, etc.
Third, modern public laundries create a rather high level of comfort for customers. In addition to washing machines, there are drying machines, ironing machines and other devices that greatly facilitate the process. Recently in the laundry you can find TVs, free Wi-Fi and coffee machines, allowing customers a pleasant time. Typically, the vast majority of American public laundry works around the clock, located in the cellars of apartment buildings or in the immediate vicinity of supermarkets, that is, even very busy people can use them.
Finally, do not forget that laundry business is an industry in which serious money revolves. So, according to official data for 2011, there are about 35,000 public laundries in the United States, whose total income reaches $ 5 billion per year.