Mixed Reviews for Departing City Halls in Vancouver and Surrey

Most residents express disappointment with the current influence of developers on their municipal governments.

Vancouver, BC [October 19, 2018] – Residents of Vancouver and Surrey hold differing views about the pressing concerns affecting their municipalities and the performance of the current governments, a new Research Co. poll conducted for CTV Vancouver has found.

The online survey of representative samples shows that two thirds of Vancouver residents (67%) believe housing is the most important issue facing the city, followed by transportation (9%), poverty (also 9%) and economic development (5%).

In Surrey, 30% of residents believe housing is the most important issue, followed closely by crime (29%), transportation (20%) and poverty (7%).

“The views of Surrey residents vary greatly depending on where they live,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “In Newton, concerns about crime are higher than anywhere else in the city, while in Cloverdale residents are more worried about transportation.”

The survey also asked residents whether the current municipal government is doing a “good job” or a “bad job” handling various matters.

In Vancouver, the best rated government competencies are promoting tourism to the city (74%), providing good sanitation services (68%), fostering artistic and cultural activities (58%) and protecting the environment (55%).

The rating is significantly lower for managing economic development ang growth (24%), dealing with homelessness and poverty (14%) and dealing with housing (10%).

Surrey gets its best marks on sanitation (68%) and arts and culture promotion (63%), but fewer than one-in-four residents are satisfied with how crime (22%), homelessness and poverty (also 22%) and housing (also 22%) have been dealt with.

Perceptions on housing affordability are especially dire in the two municipalities, with 90% of Vancouver residents and 87% of Surrey residents saying the situation is worse than it was four years ago.

A majority of City of Vancouver residents also believe quality of life (53%) and the influence of developers at City Hall (also 53%) is worse than it was in 2014. In addition, two thirds of Vancouverites (65%) say they do not like where Vancouver is going and think we need to change the course at City Hall.

In Surrey, more than half of residents (52%) say the influence of developers at City Hall is worse than it was four years ago, and a similarly high proportion (48%) feel the same way about public safety. Three-in-five residents of Surrey (60%) think it is time to change the course at City Hall.

Methodology:

Results are based on an online study conducted from September 30 to October 2, 2018, among 400 adults in the City of Vancouver and 400 adults in the City of Surrey. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in each city. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 4.9 percentage points for both samples, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our full data sets for Vancouver and Surrey and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:
Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.
[c] 778.929.0490
[e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

Concerns About Crime Skyrocket in Surrey

More than half of residents say public safety in their city is worse than in other Metro Vancouver municipalities.

Vancouver, BC [July 2, 2018] – Public safety has emerged as a key issue as residents of Surrey prepare for October’s municipal election, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative sample of City of Surrey residents, 45% of respondents identify crime as the most important issue facing their city—a proportion that rises to 58% among those who reside in Newton.

Housing is second on the list of municipal concerns with 26%, followed by transportation with 10% and poverty with 7%.

More than half of residents (56%) think Surrey should have its own municipal police force, while 27% disagree.

When asked to compare their city to other Metro Vancouver municipalities on seven issues, more than half of residents (55%) say public safety is worse in Surrey than in other cities.

More than a third of respondents (35%) believe the influence of developers is worse in Surrey than in other areas of Metro Vancouver, while one-in-four (25%) think Surrey is better on housing affordability.

“There are certainly issues where Surrey residents believe they are luckier than their neighbours in adjacent areas,”, says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “But public safety is definitely not one of them.”

Many residents of Surrey say they are dissatisfied with the actions taken by the provincial government (49%), the federal government (51%) and the municipal government (53%) to deal with crime in Surrey, and almost half (48%) disagree with the notion that the legalization of marijuana will ultimately lead to lower crime rates in their city.

A majority of Surrey residents (52%) say they would like to see Dianne Watts as the city’s mayor again, including 60% of men and 74% of South Surrey residents.

Tom Gill, recently named as the Surrey First candidate for mayor, is seen as a good choice to lead the city by 15% of residents, and a bad choice by 14%. The rating is similar for former interim BC Liberals leader Rich Coleman (Good 20%, Bad 19%), who is said to be considering a bid.

Doug Elford of the Surrey Community Alliance is regarded as a good choice for mayor by 17% of residents, and 15% feel the same way about former Surrey First councillor Bruce Hayne, who now sits as an independent.

More than a third of residents (36%) have a positive opinion of the governing Surrey First party, while 21% hold negative views. Three opposition parties hold similar positive ratings (28% for the Surrey Community Alliance, 27% for both Proudly Surrey and People First Surrey).

Most residents of Surrey (53%) think the proposed Surrey–Newton–Guildford Light Rail Transit (LRT) project is a great idea.

Methodology:
Results are based on an online study conducted from June 24 to June 28, 2018, among 401 adults in the City of Surrey. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in the City of Surrey. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 4.9 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our full data set here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:
Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.
[c] 778.929.0490
[e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca

Photo Credit: Leoboudv