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Australian City Spends $280K on Toilets for Instagrammers

Australian City Spends $280K on Toilets for Instagrammers
The Crawley Edge boat shed is a well-recognized and frequently photographed site in Perth, Australia (via Joshua Chai/Unsplash)

There is no limit to the lengths some people will go for the perfect picture.

Just ask the Perth city council, which is spending nearly $280,000 to build solar-powered toilets near a small boat shed to cater to Instagrammers.

The unassuming blue hut, which sits at the end of an equally modest pier, is the Western Australian capital’s most-photographed building.

Like the hot springs of Iceland, lochs of the Scottish Highlands, and billboards of Times Square, the Crawley Edge Boat Shed on the Swan River provides a beautiful backdrop that’s become a popular destination for shutterbugs.

“There has been an increase over the past few years of visitors to this area, with tour buses as well as self-driven visitors stopping here for photo opportunities,” Perth city council said.

And while you wouldn’t know it from the cool look on subjects’ faces (or the sheer number of Instagram images tagged there), the boat shed is not an obvious pit stop.

As noted by CNN, folks have to hoof it across the busy Mounts Bay Road. And there are no toilets nearby.

The closest public facility, according to the council, is at the Narrows Gardens—1.5 miles away.

So when nature calls, tourists often utilize the bathrooms at Zafferano’s restaurant (located within the nearby Old Swan Brewery).

The boon in pedestrian traffic, however, is disrupting the fine dining experience; Zafferano’s manager has raised several complaints of verbal abuse, vandalism, and increased costs associated with additional use of his toilets.

“The construction of the proposed facility, with appropriate signage at strategic locations, will allow visitors to the area the respite they need, without exhausting the current business facility’s capacity,” the council promised.

A public lavatory near the boat house—which would also serve visitors to the Old Swan Brewery and Eliza statue—has been identified as a “priority.”

The project won’t be cheap, though.

Perth’s first “stand-alone” toilets powered by the sun are expected to cost $401,280 AUD ($279,000 USD) to build, plus $20,000 AUD ($14,000 USD) per year for upkeep.

With construction set to begin this month, the restrooms should be completed by the end of August, CNN reported.

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