When nature calls: Moncton adding first public washroom downtown
The city of Moncton is adding a new public washroom outside city hall. This comes after local businesses have been calling on the city for more public washrooms.
It's been a long time coming, but some businesses have finally got what they've been waiting for.
"I'm hoping it's going to be helpful," said Todd Vaniderstine, the manager of The Old Triangle. "It's definitely the right path that the city needs to take."
Several businesses put out calls to the city since there have been reports of damage and vandalism in their washrooms.
"While we don't turn anyone away, we've had individuals trying to take showers using our sinks and other items were in the bathrooms," Vaniderstine said.
Austin Henderson, a spokesperson for the city says the concern has also been raised by tourists and residents that frequent the area.
"This one is located at city hall because it's a central location, it's also beneficial to our events department for events that are happening on Main Street, and the riverfront and for security reasons it's in an ideal location because its covered by CCTV cameras," said Henderson.
The pandemic forced number of businesses to close in its early stages which heightened the problem even more. It's left fewer options for the public.
As for keeping the new washroom clean, the city says the single-toilet washroom will be self-cleaning. "All of the structures inside, the walls, the floors are cleaned and sanitized and then dried with heat," said Henderson.
The washroom will cost $300,000, $200,000 of that will be paid for by the federal government through a COVID-19 recovery program.
The public washroom will be the first of its kind downtown and another one may be installed near the Avenir Centre. The washroom is expected to open to the public by the end of the month.
The CEO of the greater Moncton Chamber of Commerce, John Wishart thinks it'll make a difference for the hub city.
"It makes to have some sort of public washroom facility. You go to larger cities and they're all over the place so why not Moncton and why not downtown?" Wishart said.