Residents’ satisfaction with Christchurch City Council has risen to pre-earthquake levels, with almost three-quarters of people happy with the way the organisation delivers services.
The Council’s 2016 survey of residents found 74 per cent of people were satisfied with overall services, up nine percentage points on last year and the highest result since the 2010 survey (when 78 per cent reported overall satisfaction).
Chief Executive Karleen Edwards said it was a good result that followed a year of actions and projects to improve the way the council delivers city services and to make it easier for residents to access them.
“It is pleasing to see the community recognise the quality of our services; last year I said we needed to do more to meet people’s expectations and this result tells me that we have. We are doing well but there is always more we can do to deliver for our community.”
The Great for Christchurch programme was driving the Council to create cost efficiencies, empower staff to proactively address the needs of residents and improve service delivery across the whole organisation. Organisation structure changes announced at the end of 2015 also aimed to increase the focus on community, streamline the organisation, empower staff and create a more agile organisation.
“Our programmes of improvement and efficiency are ongoing and we must remain focused on delivering for our customers – the people of Christchurch. With continued focus on these goals, I expect to see even better results in next year’s survey of residents,'' Dr Edwards said.
A new question added to this year’s survey asked if the Council was easy to interact with – 70 per cent of people agreed that it was.
Overall, the survey showed the services and facilities that people liked most and think need the most improvement have remained similar to previous years.
Christchurch people were most happy with the way the Council runs rubbish and recycling services (95% satisfaction with recycling, 92% waste and 82% organics), libraries (93%), events and festivals (92%) and parks (69% neighbourhood parks, 84% garden and heritage parks, 70% regional parks).
People said rubbish and recycling services were easy to use and reliable; libraries were friendly, accessible and good for families; events and festivals offered a good range of activities and were well-organised; and they liked parks that were well-maintained and offered greenery in the city.
In addition, this year’s survey showed a significant jump in the number of residents who saw the city as cycle-friendly, from 37 per cent last year to 53 per cent in this year’s survey.
Residents felt the Council could improve on the following services:
• Roading (37% satisfied with roadway condition), with concerns including delays, roadworks, and congestion;
• Making parking cheaper and more available (51% satisfied that parking facilities are easy to use);
• Management and maintenance of waterways (50% satisfied with stormwater management);
• Community engagement in, and understanding of, decision-making (37%).