Relief is on the way this weekend for Burlington residents looking for a washroom at Spencer Smith Park.
Mayor Marianne Meed Ward told Inhalton.com that the City is making more public washrooms available and adding more porta-potties to deal with the large weekend crowds at the Burlington park.
With the weather heating up and attendance at the park growing quickly, they have made the washroom facilities at the Burlington Tourism Visitor Information Centre available to the public beginning this weekend.
“We are opening 414 Locust St., which is right down the street from City Hall and right behind the Esso Station across from Spencer Smith Park where a lot of people cue up to use that bathroom,” Ward told Inhalton.com’s Khaled Iwamura. “We do have some public bathrooms beside it. It’s our tourism office, which of course a lot of that has been closed through the season because of the lockdown, but we are reopening it this weekend and it will be staffed from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. so people will have that opportunity.”
The City will also be putting signage out letting park goers know exactly where the washrooms are.
“Some of the restaurants have said, ‘Look, we’re not open to come inside even though patrons want to come in and use the washrooms,’ so we’ll have signs saying, ‘Look if you need a washroom, City Hall is this way or 414 Locust is that way,'” Ward said.
More porta-potties have also been added at City parks, including Spencer Smith Park.
“They’re not the most attractive thing, but they get the job done,” Ward said.
The Burlington mayor has heard from residences the importance of making more washrooms available for use at local parks.
She recalls a comment a local resident put on her Facebook page when the City announced they were opening up the washrooms at City Hall for public use on weekends..
“It’s really funny and sweet,” she said. “Somebody put a comment on my Facebook (page) saying, ‘I’ve never been so excited to hear about more washrooms and these are the things we took for granted before COVID.'”
Washrooms at the beach pavilion, which was under renovation, are now available for use by the public.
“We’ll also have port potties there,” the mayor said. “They were always there as a backup for the pavilion, but now we’re just keeping them there because the demand is just so high.”
And they may even look at bringing even more porta-potties to Spencer Smith Park.
“We’ve just seen the crowds explode,” Ward said. “People are home, they’re staycationing, they’re eating outside, they’re doing exactly what we think is healthy and safe.
“They’re getting together in parks outside, but that creates washroom, garbage issues.”