During the 2023 Budget process, Toronto City Council approved $2.86 million in operating costs to ensure seasonal washrooms and drinking fountains in City parks are open and available to residents as soon as possible in the spring and stay open later into the fall: www.toronto.ca/news/city-of-toronto-2023-budget-protects-frontline-services-and-invests-in-housing-community-safety-transit-parks-and-emergency-services/.
The annual operating budget for maintenance, staffing and operation of the City’s 1,500 parks and greenspaces is more than $180 million. This amount includes the opening and maintenance of seasonal park washrooms.
Frontline amenities available in City parks:
• 182 washrooms in parks
• 128 seasonal park washroom buildings in 2023
• 54 winterized park washroom buildings
• More than 700 drinking water fountains
• More than 140 spray and splash pads
• More than 90 wading pools
• 55 outdoor pools
Common seasonal work to open park amenities:
• Washrooms: Once temperatures allow, technical staff activate the main water sources to facilities, connect individual fixtures (such as toilets, urinals, and faucets), and complete minor maintenance. Then parks operations teams complete a deep clean, stock the washroom and open it to the public.
• Drinking water fountains: Technical staff activate the main water source to the drinking fountain, complete connection of fixtures and conduct potable water testing before opening the fountain to public use. Water fountains attached to seasonal washroom buildings are activated as the buildings are opened. Work to open the remaining fountains continues once washroom buildings are complete, taking approximately six weeks. All fountains are tested for water potability when they are activated.
• Repairs: Staff check seasonal washrooms and drinking water fountains for winter damage during seasonal opening. In some cases, more significant repairs are needed. While major repairs are completed as soon as possible, repair timelines may delay opening the washroom or drinking fountain to the public.
Key opening dates:
Starting April 13 to week of May 5: Seasonal Park Washrooms and attached water fountains and bottle stations start to be activated and open to the public.
Starting April 13 to week of May 26: Standalone water fountains and bottle filling stations in City parks open.
May 20: Splash and spray pads open.
June 17: Ten outdoor pools open on a partial schedule (evenings/weekends).
June 24: Remaining 45 outdoor pools open on a partial schedule (evenings/weekends).
June 30: All wading pools open and all available outdoor pools open on full schedule.
Learn more about the daily status of washrooms, drinking fountains, bottle fillers and dog fountains on the City’s new Park Washrooms webpage www.toronto.ca/ParkWashrooms.
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