A community member, after hearing on Hunters Bay Radio that the Town of Huntsville was considering repurposing the kiosk formerly located at Kent Park in order to offer seasonal washroom facilities at River Mill Park, has offered to make a significant donation for permanent washrooms.
Tarmo Uukkivi, director of operations and protective services told council at its July 25 meeting that the donor has offered a donation of $300,000, to be confirmed. He would not disclose the identify of the person, pending further discussions and permission to release the name.
He said porta-potties would be used to bridge the time gap between the expiration of the lease for the washrooms at Coldwell Banker, and the construction of the new facilities.
“So this isn’t one of those sexy donations where you get your name on the side of a building. This is so much wanted and needed, I want to kiss this person so I hope we can soon know who it is,” said Councillor Bob Stone.
“At this juncture we’re just maintaining confidentiality until we work out all the terms and conditions of the donation and hopefully shortly after that if the donor is willing, we’ll make it public,” said Uukkivi.
Councillor Dan Armour asked Uukkivi if he had a rough figure of what it would cost to build the permanent washrooms at River Mill Park. Uukkivi said the original estimate was about $250,000 to $300,000 but with inflation, those costs may now be greater.
He said the bathrooms would be built at the end of the parking lot. “Past the band shell there’s a stand of basically mostly evergreens… behind there there’s an empty space,” he said, adding that servicing would be extended from the street above.
“This clearing is currently obscured by mature evergreen trees (spruce and white pine) as well as low lying shrubbery. The low lying shrubbery would be removed and trees cleaned up only to the minimum extent needed to facilitate construction and provide public line of site and visibility of the washroom building,” stated Uukkivi in his report to council.
According to his report, the next steps will be as follows:
- Secure the services of architecture and a design consultant to provide design concepts for council to consider.
- With Council approval, secure services of a contractor to provide pricing for estimated project budget for the build.
- Provide the donor with contractor-provided estimated budget.
- Once the budget is set, and capital approved, begin building with targeted completion in late summer/early fall of 2023.
Council approved the recommendation.
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