Dubai Municipality in cooperation with Med K & K Advertising and Marketing Company announced yesterday one of the latest urban projects that many of the advanced big cities of the world are lacking, public amenities. The Dhs50 million project, which is aimed at building 100 public toilets in different areas of the city of Dubai, especially along the roads and squares, will be commenced from 2008. The toilets will be built as per high international standards both in its modernity and hygiene angle. Eng. Abdullah Rafeeu, Assistant Director General for Environment and Public Health Affairs announced the project in the presence of Mona Makki from Med K&K Advertising and marketing and George Chehwane of Group Plus at the joint press conference. He said according to the World Health Organization statistics one third of the world population is suffering from this problem as they use open areas for this purpose thereby posing the threat of spreading contagious diseases of which 1.8 million people, 90% of them children less than five years, die annually. Rafeeu said Dubai Municipality has initiated setting up and management of public health amenities from the beginning itself in the sixties. “This project goes along with the development currently being witnessed by the city. We have provided public health amenities in public places with excellent hygiene specifications matching the best technical applications available in the most advanced cities of the world,” he said.
“In fact, Dubai city, which has a promising future, is facing a lot challenges in the field of public health and environment. The growth of trade and tourism, which will result in the presence of an increased number of people on the streets, markets and public places, will demand provision of public hygiene amenities in all places and markets. Dubai Municipality controls these facilities and takes care of cleaning them in order to prevent the spread of any communicable disease,” said Rafeeu. He said the public health services, cleaning and protection of the environment will benefit all the individuals of all categories in the society.
Rafeeu said public health amenities in Dubai are not new, but it is undergoing continuous enhancement in order to keep pace with the urban development, economic prosperity and global tourism witnessed by Dubai.
“It also becomes another step in beautifying the image of the city with an attractive and beautiful design, which could be seen on our streets by August 2008,” he said. “Dubai has gained the nickname of “city of business and tourism.” It is not just one of the emirates in the UAE but it has been accepted by people in all countries of the word,” said Mona Makki of Med K & K Advertising and Marketing Company, “This achievement of the city has not come as a surprise but as a result of the great effort and hard work as well as the insistence for uniqueness and excellence by sincere people, on top of them is UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum,” she said.
“This has made Dubai match the big developed cities of the world in terms of modern road network, communications and buildings, festivals and exhibitions with global dimensions, technology and media,” said Makki.
The project, which is going to be taken up by the city of Dubai, is a pioneering project in the whole Middle East, she said, adding that a nominal amount of Dhs2 will be charged for the users of the toilet.
“While designing these facilities, we have taken into consideration the religious aspect and the climate of the region. A team, in coordination with Dubai Municipality, had visited Italy for getting briefed about the operation of such facilities and their construction techniques. The team had also held a meeting with an authority formed by Milan Municipality there,” said Makki.
Giving details of the specifications of the project George Chehwane, Managing Director of Group Plus said the doors of the toilets cannot be opened except by the person inside. “The toilets also will have fire fighting equipments and emergency phone facilities. The toilets will have most modern facilities such as the ones available in cities like New York, Paris and Rome. The advertisement boards on the toilets will add colour and beauty to the city. The toilets will also have automatic cleaning facility so that it remains clean and dry all the time,” he said.
“Studies by world class laboratories have proven that the cleaning facility in these types of toilets exterminates 99.9% of germs and bacteria compared to 30-40% of manual cleaning in the ordinary public health amenities. It is similar to the sterilization of surgery rooms of the operation theatres,” said Chehwane.
Prominent features of the amenity include automatic sensing system for flushing water, sanitizing liquid, tissue papers and hand drier to avoid germs infection; system for washing, cleaning, purifying and sterilizing the walls, toilet seats and floor after each use with water and air with high pressure; automatic opening and closing of doors; due to safety reasons these facilities will be automatically closed from midnight to morning; air conditioning system; automatic voice messages to inform and warn people about the specialties; facilities are controlled online to get accurate statistics and information about the usage, break down and preventive maintenance works; the units are environment friendly as they are designed to consume the lowest amount of electricity and water; protection to resist natural elements, scratches and graffiti; equipped to receive people with special needs; equipped with weight sensing system to prevent doors from locking in case a single child or two adults together; availability of water sprayer to wash the toilet after each use; equipped to set up advertisements inside and outside. This facility is considered to be one of the most important public sector projects implemented by private sector.
Chehwane said the first phase of the project had started way back in September 2005 and the first unit will be operational early 2008 and all units would become operational by next August.
“Dubai will become the first city in the Middle East to have set up such a system. By this Dubai will maintain its position of a pioneering city,” he said.