AUSTIN (KXAN) —The Austin City Council on Thursday will vote on whether to approve a contract to clean and empty a single portable toilet in the downtown area. The cost? A minimum of $115,000 per year.
The contract will initially be for two years, with the ability for it to be reauthorized each year thereafter for a total of five years at a cost not to exceed $775,000, or $155,000 per year.
The portable toilet would be located within five miles of the State Capitol and must be cleaned twice a day, including refilling water and removing waste because it does not have its own plumbing. That comes out to $157.53 per cleaning. It may have to be cleaned more often during heavy-use times like special events, according to a spokesman for the Public Works Department.
Only one contractor, Blue Chem Inc., submitted a bid.
Over the past year, the city conducted a pilot program of a temporary restroom in various areas of downtown Austin. It helped inform the city of areas that would benefit from a permanent public restroom, such as an area near I-35 and 6th Street and the 500 block of Brazos street, according to a city memo. The Austin Transportation Department will be responsible for paying for construction and upkeep.