Residents get ‘high-rise’ toilets

2016-11-08 06:00

A R2.5m pilot project to improve ablution facilities is set to be rolled out in Masiphumelele’s wetlands area.

The project will see raised ablution blocks, consisting of toilets, showers and wash basins, constructed over canals.

Subcouncil chairperson Felicity Purchase explains there have been issues for years over the toilets in the informal settlement which cannot be connected to the main line sewer, as the area is below sea level and will not drain into the sewage line with gravity.

Recent media reports highlighted damage to the chemical toilets placed throughout the informal settlement, which resulted in overflowing pipes and stinking odours. This damage was attributed to aging infrastructure and dumping.

This latest proposed solution will see the municipality build elevated platforms over canals which will house two ablution facilities.

The buildings will use prefabricated building materials placed on the concrete slabs, Purchase says. The structures alone are estimated to cost about R1.5m, she adds.

The elevated design will enable the City of Cape Town to provide flush toilets for both men and women, Purchase explains. There will also be facilities for disabled residents.

There will be a total of seven toilets between the two ablution blocks, along with showers and washbasins. It will have a permanent caretaker to prevent vandalism.

City officials have already met with community leaders to present the proposal, says Purchase, and it was “very well received”.

The design and community consultation are complete for the project, Purchase says, and the plans are awaiting approval. It is expected the construction will begin in March.

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