Arlington Residents Rate City Services Highly

The latest annual survey of Arlington residents found that the City appears to be more business-friendly, financially sound and more positively viewed as a good place to live and work.

This is the City’s 11th City Services Satisfaction Survey, conducted over three weeks in December and January and used to determine resident’s perceptions of Arlington and its services and to identify areas for improvement. Information gathered from the survey data also will be used in budgeting and planning for the 2014 Fiscal Year.

In a statistically valid sample of Arlington residents, more than 80 percent rated Arlington high as a place to live, up from 74 percent who reported a “good” or “excellent” quality of life last year. Respondents reported that the top three reasons for living in the City are location, convenience, affordable housing, and property taxes.

About seven out of ten of those surveyed agreed that the City is headed in the right direction. They would recommend Arlington to others and intend to continue residing in Arlington.

“We work hard to provide a safe, livable community, and it seems to be having a marked effect,” said Mayor Robert Cluck.

“I’m very impressed,” he said of the results.

The survey was conducted online for the second year contacting prospective survey subjects via library and parks department e-mail distribution lists and mailing lists selected from a list of occupied City residences. A total of 29,118 survey invitations yielded 598 Internet interviews.

Other Results

The survey also showed that respondents gave high marks–“strongly” or “somewhat agreed”– to the City’s cultural diversity (85 percent), housing options (82 percent) and financial stability (77 percent).

Almost three-quarters of surveyed residents rated their neighborhoods “excellent” or “good” and listed speeding and residential and car burglaries as top concerns.

Sense of safety in business areas of the City improved over last year’s responses, with 53 percent of respondents reporting that they felt “very safe” or “somewhat safe” at night, up from 45 percent in those two combined response categories last year.

About two-thirds of City services received a “good” or “excellent” rating. Fire services, Libraries, Parks and Recreation and Water Utilities rated among the highest with satisfaction above 85 percent.

Continuing areas of concern in the City, according to respondents, are code compliance, zoning service, building permits, and graffiti removal.

The quality and maintenance of streets, where combined “good” and “excellent” responses came in lower than 70 percent, continued to be perceived by respondents as an area where improvement is needed. The quality and speed of road work and street repairs, condition of sidewalks, traffic signal timing and traffic management on major thoroughfares were sections with responses at or below 50 percent satisfaction.

Read the full report.