Toilet block update March 2022: work begins!

The Horowhenua District Council is about to begin the refresh of the Hank Edwards Reserve toilet block and wants the community to know what to expect.

Work should begin from 14 March 2022 and it’s hoped to complete it by 08 July 2022.

Update 10 March 2022: The project costs in the region of $354,000. Note: that averages out to about $7,000 per year for the potential 50 year lifespan of the building.

One really important point though is that Covid-19 could take the project off-track in two ways:

a] Supply chain problems. We’re probably all aware that building supplies and many other goods have been affected by Covid. The contractors have most of the materials they require already in their depot, but a few items are still on order.

b] Staff supply problems. Being able to get the job done requires people to do the work. Covid is affecting some workers connected with the project. As we’re in a Covid surge at the moment both HDC and the contractor have already been affected by having staff away because of Covid. The contractor though is keen to get on with the work without delay and will be making efforts to keep the job moving. [Update 08-Mar-22: the struck out section inaccurately said some HDC staff were affected by Covid. My apologies for the error.]

The work plan

Work will primarily be carried out between 7 am and 5 pm on weekdays. Occasionally the workers may stay later if something needs to be finished.

The demolition phase is expected to be noisy. Demolition work will take a week or less. After that there will be only regular construction noise.

Site security and public safety

The site will be fully fenced, with no unauthorised access. During demolition the fence will cover a wide area to allow machinery to move around. For the construction phase though the fence will be moved closer to the area of work. The access point for the Council mowing team will be moved temporarily.

There will be no floodlights so light pollution should not be a problem.

The contractors also aim to keep a clean and tidy site as far as possible, and once work is complete will sweep the surrounds to find and remove leftover construction materials. They will take precautions so that high winds won’t blow materials from the site into surrounding areas.

Demolition generally involves trying to remove recyclable materials that may be used in other projects rather than simply being dumped.

We have asked that the two wooden signs with the Waikawa Beach ‘sunburst’ (‘Women’ and ‘Men’) be kept aside for the WBRA to hold as part of the history of Waikawa Beach. The new toilets will be unisex.

Because the toilet block will be demolished and rebuilt there will be no access to the outdoor showers, or to the toilet facilities. Two Portaloos for public use (regularly cleaned) will be installed on the first day in the area where the recycling station generally goes.

The AED defibrillator will be moved to a spot outside the fence and closer to Manga Pirau Street where there will later also be an information board about the project. The rubbish bin will also be moved to be close to the two picnic tables under the big tree.

Note: although the plans show a drinking water fountain it may not be possible to install one because of health and safety concerns, including the need to monitor it frequently. One problem with water fountains is that people sometimes put their mouth around the tap itself, leading to possible contamination. The dog water bowls will still be installed though.

The future

The expected life of this refreshed toilet block is 50 years. The old one gave 50 or 60 years of service so it’s past due for some work.

See also Plans for new toilet block at Hank Edwards Reserve.

Information and comments

If you have comments or queries about the toilet block refresh please turn first to the Secretary of the Waikawa Beach Ratepayers Association, . The WBRA is liaising with HDC and can get clarification on matters that may come up.

For regular Waikawa Beach news visit Waikawa News.

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