Council flushes plan to close four public toilets

No public toilets in Oamaru will be closed by the Waitaki District Council after all.

The proposal to close the Awamoa Park, Severn St, lower Thames St (next to The Last Post) toilets and the main block in the Oamaru Public Gardens was the most contentious issue in the draft 2010-11 annual plan.

The aim was to save almost $50,000 a year to offset a similar increase in the annual cost of maintaining and cleaning the district's remaining toilets.

The council came close yesterday to closing one block - the vote to keep the Severn St toilets was tied 5-all.

Waitaki Mayor Alex Familton said because of that - under standing orders he does not have a casting vote - the status quo would remain and the toilets would stay open.

The main gardens toilet block will remain open until a new block is built.

That block, and the toilets in the children's playground, will then close.

There was solid support from councillors yesterday to keep the Awamoa Park toilets open, but a narrow vote of 6-5 to keep the lower Thames St block open.

The council has referred all other issues relating to public toilets throughout the district to a public toilet strategy review, including better signage and 24 hour availability.

That review is expected to be finished within the next few months.


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