Pupils have a hand in landscaping new loos

The Central Otago District Council  asked Tarras School pupils for landscaping help around newly installed toilets in the town, which has inspired  some creative ideas.

‘‘I wanted there to be a massive crocodile in there,’’ K’Dence Harrison  said.

‘‘It would be under a big wooden fence and we would feed the crocodile every half an hour.’’

Bronny O’Sullivan  thought more about aesthetics, suggesting flowers and bushes.

‘‘But also, maybe then we can put a guard dog there so people can’t get in the school.’’

The  council is involving the school in its $25,000 landscaping work around the toilets, which were installed three weeks ago.

The project to date has cost $426,800 which is estimated to rise to $537,100.

Just the purchase cost and installation of the toilet unit was $202,000.

Council property and facilities manager Mike Kerr said this was the market rate for this design of toilet.

The facility contains two standard unisex toilet cubicles and one accessible cubicle, and has an image of Shrek the sheep  on the side.

Other costs were incurred because there was no town water or sewerage system to connect it to.

The cost of a disposal system design was $17,700 and a treatment plant, built at the back of the school, was $156,800.

‘‘To compare, the toilets at the Cromwell Mall cost $344,000 in 2012. They could connect straight into the town water and sewer,’’ Mr Kerr said.

An estimated $65,000 would be spent on  purchasing  the Ministry of Education-owned land. The Government put up to $247,200 towards the project and the council committed $370,000.

Principal Rachelle Haslegrave said the school saw a lot of foot traffic through the toilets.

The toilets were partly a reaction to lobbying from the school because tourists would trespass on it seeking toilets and sometimes relieve themselves on its grounds.

‘‘I don’t know that they’ve noticed a huge difference yet but the Portaloo has been taken away from our gateway, which the children are very excited about.’’


Toilet costs
Project cost to date: $426,800
Estimated total cost: $537,100
Toilet unit cost and installation: $202,000
Water treatment and disposal field design and construction: $174,500
Land purchase: $65,000


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