Waiouru toilet win shows importance of bigger vision
Waiouru’s iconic new public toilet won the ‘Best Loo’ category for 2016 in the Keep NZ Beautiful Awards held in Auckland over the weekend.
Ruapehu District Council Manager Community Services Margaret Hawthorne said that new Waiouru loos had been a huge success since their opening last year with both the local community and the travelling public.
“From day one the new toilets whose design mimics that of the National Army Museum across the road and its picnic area has been successful in getting travellers to stop and take a break in Waiouru rather than just driving through,” said Mrs. Hawthrone.
“This is providing benefits to local businesses and allowing drivers to rest reducing the risk of driver fatigue on Ruapehu roads.”
“It really demonstrates the importance and impact that good architecturally designed buildings can have on their environment and surrounding community.”
Mrs. Hawthorne said that the toilet project forms part of Council’s larger economic development strategy for Ruapehu based around a broader concept of Destination Management Planning.
“For Waiouru the development of the public toilets and surrounding amenity area along with street landscaping along SH1 are the first part of a vision for Waiouru as being a gateway to the volcanic plateau and the Ruapehu District,” she said.
“By taking a ‘destination management’ approach to infrastructure investment Council is integrating support for local business with destination marketing and economic development activity.”
Mrs. Hawthorne noted that Council was aware that people would like to see things happening faster however it was important to see projects such as this and Taumarunui’s Town Centre Project as part of a journey of township revitalization.
“What is critically important is that residents be they from Waiouru or Taumarunui or wherever continue to engage with Council on the revitalization process.”
“Putting our townships on a path to growth and prosperity will take ideas, energy and passion from the people who will benefit the most, our local communities,” she said.