The provision of public amenities is an integral part of the provision of other services such as:
- Waterways (beaches, estuaries or lakes);
- Commercial / shopping centres, and
- Parks / Reserves.
Council provides toilets at other community locations such as sporting venues, libraries and community buildings but these are typically only available for patrons of the facility whilst it is operating.
Council has developed a weighted average index that highlights which of the waterways, shopping centres or parks services require the provision of a public toilet.
For parks the weighting considers if:
- It is an icon/ district or local park. Weighting is given to icon and district parks;
- Has a playground and the size of the playground;
- Has a BBQ and the number of BBQs;
- Has a shelter and the size of the shelter;
- Services a sporting field;
- Has a skate park;
- Has a learn to ride facility, and
- Has an outdoor gym.
For the CBD or Commercial / shopping centres the weighting considers:
- The size of the shopping centre, and
- If there is more than one toilet in the CBD area if it is the main toilet.
For waterways the weighting considers:
- If it’s a beach;
- if the beach is patrolled;
- if it is a family/ surfing or diving beach;
- if it is an inland waterway;
- Has a boat ramp and the level of utilisation? and
- Has a wharf or jetty.
Other factors considered are:
- Carpark - size and utilisation levels;
- If others rely on the toilet, for example, an overflow for picture theatre, public hall, tennis courts, men’s sheds, arboretum, Swimming Pool;
- Highway rest stop;
- Dog off-leash area;
- Safer by design principles, and
- Town rank if there is to be only one toilet.
Thus, the current priority is to replace:
- Highly utilised toilets;
- At the end of their life or before their condition detracts patronage;
- That do not comply with current accessibility standards. Council has 119 Public amenities of which 58 meet the needs of persons with disabilities enabling inclusivity. Council has a Disability Inclusion Action Plan (DIAP) feedback was that 1 in 2 people who we consulted with said that footpaths, ramps and public toilets were not easy to use in the Shoalhaven. Councils strategy is to provide toilets that can be modified or replaced by accessible toilets.
- Councils Integrated Strategic Plan states that with Asset Management Planning - Utilisation and operating/maintenance costs shall be monitored to ensure that costs do not outweigh the benefits derived. Minimum utilisation measures shall be determined for all assets to determine surplus assets.
- to meet current budget available
- new will be considered with embellishment of infrastructure and increase in patronage
- Port-a-loos are provided to locations that are seasonal
- signage is provided to locations directing patrons to the nearest available public amenity
The 2016 Shoalhaven Community Survey management report identified that public toilets are an area for improvement in the Shoalhaven with only 69.5% of the population satisfied or providing no comment in relation to.
They have been identified as low satisfaction and a high derived importance.
Further information is available on Councils webpage – public amenities (toilets)