be supposed to

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Caleb Song

New Member
Hi Everyone,

I'd like to get some opinions on the following sentences.

- All restrooms in the building are supposed to be not available due to the construction

- All restrooms in the building will not be available due to the construction

Which sentence is more appropriate for delivering the message.

Someone suggested first sentence, but I am not positive of using "be supposed to" in this context.

Please give your opinion and explain the meaning of 'be supposed to'

Thank you so much.
  • Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    Welcome to the forum. :)

    Either they will be available or they will not; I don't think it's a question of "supposed to be", so I agree with your questioning the use of that phrase. And since there's a single word for "not available", we'd use it: unavailable. I guess you're writing a sign or notice, and I wonder: Are you talking about the present, or the future? Are they unavailable right now?


    Sixties Mod
    English UK Southern Standard English
    I think "supposed to be" in this context suggests the possibilty that someone might fail to carry out the construction plan properly and the restrooms remain available. It sounds very odd, actually. The other version "will not be available" indicates a certainty.

    And welcome to the forum! :)


    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    Thank you for your comments. So basically, both sentences are ok, but the meanings are slightly different?
    No. And I think you need to give an idea of when this is happening. If you're putting up notices, you don't want to say "next week", because then you'll have to put up new notices the following week saying "this week". And I wouldn't use "out of commission", since that suggests that there's something wrong with the plumbing.

    I'd say: All restrooms in the building will be unavailable from [ date ] to [ date ] due to construction work.
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