Coming soon to a john near you, adopt-a-potty advertising?
Olga, the city’s only 24-7 Automated Public Toilet (APT), was so successful in 2008 with over 45,000 flushes that the city wants to extend the program and is currently discussing a business “adoption” program to cover the cost of operation, according to Ward 8 Ald. John Mar.
“I think it was overwhelming how successful the program has been, and I would like to look at opportunities to look at cost recovery because it’s expensive to run,” Mar said, noting the city may allow sponsors to advertise on the public washroom located in Tompkins Park downtown.
The city installed the washroom in 2008 as a part of the Centre City Implementation, which will present an annual update on progress, including the success of the toilet, during the city’s Land Use, Planning and Transportation Committee tomorrow.
Centre City Implementation director Dave Breckon said the toilet initially cost the city $400,000 to $500,000, but costs about $30,000 to $40,000 to run annually for cleaning, soap, toilet paper and maintenance costs.
“It works out to just under $1 per use, but considering the success it’s been going very well. It’s pretty much used at all times of day from all types of people,” Breckon said.
Darryl Paton lives in the Beltline and said while he doesn’t personally use the toilet himself, he appreciates the location.
“Living downtown you get people drinking and peeing and I see a lot less of that now, so it’s nice.”