WA Section Toilet Upgrade
The open space created by the medium-density housing built in WA section has been earmarked by the community for sanitation provision. PEP supported the community in designing an improved sanitation facility – based on their requirements and national policy norms and standards (which are currently not being implemented in most sanitation blocks in Informal settlements).
At the end of 2021, ten new toilets were installed by the city. Despite PEP’s lobbying no design innovations were applied. Over the next year, the community demonstrated an unwavering commitment to keeping the toilets clean and well-maintained with a system applied where a group of families have access to, and responsibility for, a single toilet. Based on this proven track record PEP engaged the community as to co-design an upgrade to the toilet. This improved structure is currently under construction and includes a roof for the structure and a water tank which will be used for clothes washing.
The upgrade is targeted at showing the city the possibilities for delivering improved sanitation structures that meet policy standards. In addition, it aims to demonstrate that community involvement in the design and planning of sanitation facilities leads to downstream savings on maintenance and management – longevity of the facility. With the high rate of toilet facilities that quickly fall into a state of disrepair in informal settlements, the upgrade will be used to demonstrate a new modality of community-centred sanitation provision that should be adopted and scaled by the city.
Based on this project PEP also aims to engage the city about a delipidated toilet in WA section, site B Khayelitsha that can be aligned to a public space upgrade. The goal is to advocate for the city to think beyond the delivery of minimum standard sanitation facilities and align sanitation upgrades to a community-centred process that also improves surrounding public space. The WA toilet will serve as a practical pilot on which this argument is based.