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  Home >> Public Toilets >>  Public Toilets Management Plan


Public Toilets Management Plan

1. Introduction

1.1 Background – Rationale for the Council’s involvement in the particular activity. 

Overview of the activity scope.

The provision of public toilets is a discretionary activity for local authorities under the Local Government Act 2002. Council reviewed service level standards for this activity in 2003. Public participation in the review showed community support for the provision of public toilets.

1.2 Community outcomes to which the activity contributes.

· Safe and Healthy People

· Sustainable District and Environment

1.3 The activity goal and principal objectives.

To upgrade and maintain public toilets in accordance with Council’s Public Toilets

Strategy 2003 (including NZ Standard 4241:1999).

2. Levels of Service, Performance Measures, and Relationship to

Community Outcomes

2.1 List of performance measures for the activity.


Service Performance
Toilets shall be provided in major shopping areas such as central Oamaru, at major sporting venues, in all townships of population greater than 100 and where there are formal Council picnic areas. Maintain facilities to comply with all relevant statutes
Service levels such as proximity to amenities, standard of fittings, etc is defined in the Toilet Strategy. Achieve public satisfaction of quality of maintained standard of facilities at 70% or higher
All toilets will be upgraded to meet at least NZS 4241:1999  

2.2 Explanation of how targets and measures intended to be reported in the Annual


The Annual Report will indicate the progress with implementing the strategy.

3. The Existing Situation Described

Council provides public toilets at 28 sites from Roundbush adjacent to Lake Ohau in the northwest to Macraes in the south. Many of these facilities are at sporting venues, e.g. Weston Domain and Centennial Park, others are located in commercial zones.

In addition to the above public toilets, there are facilities at eight sites related to Waitaki Lakes Camping Reserves and public toilets in some Council Operational Properties including the Oamaru Library, The Waitaki Aquatic Centre, The Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony and the Waihemo Centre. 

In 2003 Council adopted a strategy to upgrade its public toilets. The standard specification for each facility indicates the standard fittings, hours of operation, etc. 

The Waitaki Strategy specifications are based on NZ Standard 4241. Using this model, Council opted to use four grades as follows:

Grade C High specification toilets for high demand or commercial zones. 

Grade D Utility toilets for frequent use / demand in commercial zones, reserves and community amenity areas.

Grades E and F Wilderness toilets for occasional use / demand in remote or isolated areas to protect environment due to absence of alternatives.

The Waitaki Public Toilets Strategy also includes a Sanitary Services Assessment.

4. Maintenance and Operating

4.1 How owned.

Council owned public toilets are sited on Council Owned land or land that is vested in Council or land that Council holds management responsibility for.

4.2 How managed and controlled.

The Waitaki District Council has developed the Waitaki District Public Toilets Strategy.

This strategy includes the use of contractor to maintain the facilities.

4.3 Estimated costs next ten years (at least).

Operating funding requirements for this activity are expected to be $200,000 per annum.

4.4 Maintenance and operating issues.

Maintenance and Operation decisions are based on feedback from the cleaning contractor, the public and inspections by Council officers.

5. Future Demand (if applicable)

5.1 Demand Predictions

Demand for public toilets usually occurs where people congregate away from their residence or workplace for a length of time greater than one hour and where no public toilet facilities are provided as part of another building.

(i) Local residents and visitors expect public toilets to be available in the commercial area of each community

(ii) Local residents expect Council to provide public toilets in publicly accessible Council operational properties.

(iii) Local residents expect public toilets to be available in popular rural and semi rural passive recreation reserves

(iv) Local residents expect public toilets to be available at major sporting venues 

(v) The public expect public toilets to be accessible, clean, safe and well maintained

(vi) Environmental effects of tourism is driving demand for more public toilets

(vii) The Oamaru Harbour is a popular recreation area. Additional (i.e. new) public toilets may be required to meet public demand in this area.

Council’s Toilet Strategy was prepared to enable it to meet public demand. Council has also approved a priorities programme for upgrading / renewing existing facilities to meet demand for higher service level standards.

5.2 How arrived at. 

Council followed a Special Consultative Procedure as part of the process for developing the Toilet Strategy in 2003. Council also undertakes public surveys to monitor public satisfaction with this activity

6. New Capital Expenditure

6.1 Future capital works programme 

No new toilets are planned. Request for new toilets and changing sheds in the Oamaru Harbour is under consideration but not yet planned.

6.2 How capital works funded.

Capital works to be funded by loans

7. Renewals Capital Expenditure and Depreciation

7.1 Future renewals needs – next ten years (at least).

The three highest priorities for upgrades and renewals are:

· Renewal of facilities in Eden Street, Oamaru

· Renewal of facilities in Ronaldsay Street, Palmerston

· Improvement in signage

Other renewals as follows:

· Developing new toilets near Shag Point

· Improvements to the Awamoa park toilets to be considered after the intersection changes are completed

· Upgrading / renewing the Roberts Park and Oamaru Gardens toilets

· That Council collect data on the level of use of the toilets at Wynyard Street, Hydro Place (Kurow), Roberts Park, Awamoa Park, Lower Thames Street and Severn Street (Oamaru), in order to assess each site for upgrade prioritisation and renewal specifications in accordance with Council’s Public Toilet Strategy.

· Renewal of the following sites will be considered at a later date: 

· Oamaru Gardens

· Roberts Park

· Hydro Place

· New or existing facilities at Gemmells Crossing need to comply with the Otago Regional Water Plan.

7.2 How renewals funded.

Depreciation of current toilet facilities has not been funded. Initial replacement and upgrades are to be funded by loan. Future renewals will be funded by depreciation.

8. Funding the Annual Net Cost – ‘Who Pays’

Section 101(3) Considerations

The primary benefit from public toilets is their use by visitors, which is a people-based benefit. This benefit is excludable and rival. There are existence values for leisure opportunities and economic development from the provision of infrastructure. This is both a people-based public good (toilets at recreation sites) and a property-based public good (commercial businesses in urban areas). Public health benefits are nonexcludable and non-rival.

This activity is a mix of public and private good but mainly private good.

Council policy is to ensure cost effective access to heritage and leisure amenities and to support economic development. The private good component of this activity is recoverable through user charges but user charging to recover the economic allocation of costs would frustrate the policy objectives.

Choice of Funding Sources 

Cost Allocation and Funding Sources %
Public Good
Targeted Rate – Capital Value – Oamaru Business
Area General Rate – Land Value

Targeted Rate – Capital Value – District Services
Private Good   0

The choice of these funding sources recognises the nature and spread of benefits and lawfully available funding sources. The use of a general rate reflects the public good to the district as a whole. Uniform annual general charges provide a better recognition of the people-based benefit but the use of these funding sources is unlawful.

Rating Policy
The cost recovery by way of rating sources is achieved by applying the following  policy:
  %     Differential
Targeted Rate – Capital Value – Oamaru Business Area
General Rate – Land Value
Targeted Rate – Capital Value – District Services
                                                                                       Total 100  

9. Resource Consents / Property Designations (not applicable)

10. Demand Management

See Waitaki Public Toilet Strategy 2003

11. Significant Negative Effects (not applicable)

12. Significant Forecasting Assumptions, Uncertainties, and Risk Management (not applicable)

13. Laws, Bylaws and Strategic Policies

  •  Local Government Act 2002

  •  Health Act 1956

  •  The Waitaki District Public Toilets Strategy 2003.

14. Plan Review / Public Consultation

Council undertook a Special Consultative Procedure to develop its Public Toilet Strategy 2003

15. Conclusion

Upgrades and renewals arising from the Strategy will be progressively implemented over the next decade. 

Waitaki Community Plan 2004/14 – Volume 2

It is one of the beautiful compensations of this life that no one can sincerely try to help another without helping himself. --Charles Dudley Warner