Toilets, bins being funded
Pressure from increased usage of public toilets and rubbish bins by tourists has forced the Government to cough up millions to deal with the problem and Central Otago will benefit.
Eight public sites around the region will be fitted with hightech rubbish compacting bins at a cost of $139,200.
The new bins could cater for five times the amount of waste of a normal rubbish bin and when full, would notify authorities of its need to be emptied via email.
Central Otago Mayor Tim Cadogan said it was welcome relief, especially for areas like Bendigo, near the head of Lake Dunstan, which was ‘‘such a problem’’ due to increasing amounts of visitors to the area.
‘‘There’s been great concern in the community about how the problems at Bendigo have got out of hand. [It is] going to be really important.’’
New bins would be installed at sites around Lake Dunstan, Cromwell, Alexandra, Clyde and Roxburgh, Cadogan said.
Public toilet infrastructure in the area had also been given a welcome monetary boost.
About $180,000 had
been allocated for upgrading plumbing systems at Weatherall Creek and Champagne Gully on the edge of Lake Dunstan and for a new toilet block in the Cromwell Mall.
‘‘It’s going to make a huge difference just to be able to meet the demand,’’ Cadogan said. ‘‘ We have to remember the demand has been unprecedented [and] it’s come at a cost.’’
A portaloo was placed alongside toilets at Champagne Gully over the summer to meet demand as 20 or more vehicles could be seen parked in the area on any given day.
The funding was part of a $5.2 million Government announcement for tourism infrastructure at 28 sites around the country.
The small community of Makarora, near Wanaka, also benefited receiving $150,000 new public toilets.
Queenstown Lakes District Mayor Jim Boult said it was ‘‘marvellous’’ for a community that had previously not had public toilets.
‘‘I’m absolutely delighted.’’
The funding was the final round of the Regional Mid-sized Tourism Facilities Grant Fund, which will provide $100m from the Tourism Infrastructure Fund over the next four years.