Gates to stop toilet vandals

GATES will be installed to the entrances of the Nelson Reserve public toilets in a bid to keep vandals out.

A report revealed at yesterday’s Gympie Regional Council Community and Economic Development Committee meeting showed the 24 hour toilets had been a hotspot for graffiti at night and its doors had been kicked in and broken at the hinges.

Locks have also been levered off, names initials and other wording has been gouged into the doors, coat hooks have been torn off, door hinge bolts have been unbolted, people have urinated on the toilet rolls and defecated and smeared it over wall surfaces and in basins.

Committee Chair Cr Tony Perrett said it was very disappointing.

He said ratepayers picked up the bill to fix the relatively new loos and would have to now pay for a gate to lock vandals out.

Council’s Environmental Services Co-ordinator Ian Wolff said the vandalism appeared to be increasing at an “alarming rate” and the cheapest option to stop it was to install the gates.

Cr Larry Friske said council tried to come up with a design for the toilets that was modern and attractive and no matter what council did “they find a way to break it”.

“It’s a really disappointing part of our community,” he said.

Although, Cr Perrett said there was no money in the budget for the gates (which will cost $3000 – $4000), Cr Friske said it was important to implement them immediately so that rate payers didn’t have to pay to fix any more vandalism.

Council’s cleaning contractor told council he never saw passengers, dropped off at night by Greyhound Coaches to use the loos, but they were well-used during the day.

Security screening and gates will be installed and council will trial locking the gates at 7.30pm.

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