City of York Council is investing £70,000 to refurbish Silver Street and Coppergate public toilets in York’s city centre – with the works starting next week.
Works to update the Silver Street facilities will start on Monday 5 November. They are expected to take around two weeks to complete – ahead of the lead up to the Christmas festivities and St Nicholas Fair.
The refurbishment will be carried out in stages, once Silver St is completed, works will then start on Coppergate. The disabled toilets (changing places) and market traders’ toilets at Silver Street will be refurbished first, followed by other facilities. There will be a full closure of Silver Street from Monday 5 November for two weeks.
There will be signage in place signposting visitors to alternative city centre facilities, which include Coppergate, Exhibition Square and Rougier Street.
The work will be managed by Healthmatic, the council’s toilet management contractor, who will be investing their money and time in the sites as well.
Work on a £663,000 refurbishment of York’s public conveniences starts on Monday
The contractor Healthmatic will take over the refurbishment and maintenance of facilities in the city centre and Acomb to both improve cleanliness and disabled access, while making required savings of £75,000.
Work at the Union Terrace car and coach park will start on Monday 24 March, and temporary facilities will be installed next door, with no charge for entry during refurbishment.
At Nunnery Lane car park, work will start on Monday 31 March. The men’s facilities will remain open and the night-time toilet and accessible toilet will be temporarily available for women, again with no charge for entry during refurbishment. Both projects will complete in early May.
Upgrading will take place at the public toilets on Acomb’s Front Street, Coppergate, Exhibition Square, Tanner Row and those at the car parks on Nunnery Lane and St George’s Field. Besides improvements to the Silver Street toilets which already includes a Changing Place disabled facility, an additional Changing Place will be built as part of the refurbishment at Union Terrace car park’s toilets.
The York Council is handing over the running of its public conveniences to a private contractor.
A standard charge of 40p will be made to users. The contractor will be able to increase the charge by 10p per annum.
The news is not particularly surprising although the scale of the charge is.
Visitors already tortured by traffic restriction fines now face another form of discomfort. The vendetta follows on from the high profile persecution of those “caught short”.
The Council has now published a list of 9 further offenders all of who faced fines of over £100. One urinated outside the Magistrate Court building conveniently saving on transport costs.
The Council hopes to save £75,000 a year from the charge. In return it promises a £663,000 refurbishment programme including £33,000 to be spent on the Front Street Acomb toilets.
All toilets will have unisex cubicles and have baby change facilities. Accessibility will be greatly improved with all facilities having alarm cords for disabled users connected to a 24-hour helpline and there will be 24-hour access to all toilets. This will be controlled by gates operated by payment of a 40p fee – what is already being charged at Silver Street – while disabled users are can continue to use RADAR keys for no charge.
Nine public conveniences will be provide under the new arrangements. The nine are located at:
Acomb, Front Street
Haxby, Main Street
Nunnery Lane CP
St George’s Field CP
Other public conveniences will close
York marathon faces sprint rival
A new York Sprint race is to be held next summer for the first time. The event will aim to find the fastest visitor to the City.
Entrants will be asked to drink 3 pints of lager and will then be given a map of the Councils new network of public conveniences. Contestants will then race to the nearest site.
In line with the publicity for the Lendal bridge closure, recommended routes to the loos will be marked out making full use of the northern by pass.
On arrival 50% of the conveniences will be closed for cleaning.
CCTV cameras will be strapped to the back of each contestant to ensure that they do not cheat.
The entry fee for the contest will be 40p Multiple entries are allowed but will be charged separately.
Entry forms will be available on the Council web site shortly.
NB. The event has no connection with the “brass monkeys” race although the consequences could be similar.