OPINION

People Feeling Positive about New Plymouth District

Wednesday 1 April 2009, 1:32PM
By New Plymouth District Council
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NEW PLYMOUTH

An independent survey of 400 residents in New Plymouth District shows locals are feeling very positive about living here.

The survey was conducted by the National Research Bureau (NRB) in February to determine how well New Plymouth District Council is providing services and facilities.

“The survey has a lot of good news for the council, but it also shows that residents are incredibly positive about the lifestyle they have,” says General Manager Strategy and Policy Group Frank Versteeg.

“Ninety-nine per cent of the survey respondents said the district’s quality of life is either good or very good. That’s an exceptional result, and shows that even in the midst of bad news about the world economy we have a lot to be happy about in New Plymouth District.”

The data gathered from the survey will be taken into account when the Council considers the Draft 2009-2019 Community Plan, and will also help develop NPDC’s ongoing Customer First programme.

The NRB survey results show a generally high level of satisfaction with the Council’s performance.

Seventy-four per cent of respondents feel the Council meets the needs and aspirations of the district (up from 70 per cent in 2008), while three per cent do not (down from seven per cent).

Of those respondents who pay rates, 24 per cent are very satisfied with how rates are spent on the council’s services and facilities (up from 18 per cent in 2008). Fifty-eight per cent are fairly satisfied (down from 66 per cent) and 14 per cent are not very satisfied (up from 13 per cent).

Survey respondents are most concerned about:

* Availability of car parking (25 per cent – down from 43 per cent in 2008).
* Ability to drive around the district quickly, easily safely (20 per cent – up from 19 per cent).
* Quality and safety of cycleways (16 per cent – down from 22 per cent).
* Rubbish collection and disposal (16 per cent – down from 18 per cent).
* Quality and safety of footpaths (16 per cent – down from 18 per cent).

The respondents were particularly satisfied with the district’s libraries, access to the natural environment, the quality of the district’s living environment, the sewerage system, parks and reserves, walkways, Puke Ariki, swimming pools and the assistance the Council gives to the community.

Seventy-six per cent feel the overall quality of life in New Plymouth District is very good, with 23 per cent considering it good and one per cent considering it fair.

Thirty-four per cent say the district is “definitely” a safe place to live, and 64 per cent “mostly” think so.