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Cedar Rapids National Community Survey Results

Cedar Rapids National Community Survey Results

June 4, 2020

City of Cedar Rapids Releases National Community Survey Results

In January 2020 the City of Cedar Rapids asked a sample of residents to participate in The National Community Survey™ (The NCS™). The survey is designed to provide information about how the city government is serving residents, to gauge perceptions of the City, and to make comparisons with peer cities and previous Cedar Rapids survey results. The survey centers on community livability and includes questions about the quality of life in the community, local policies, demographics, rating of local government services, and resident use of services. Survey results measure public perceptions and areas of interest for residents.

Cedar Rapids’ overall survey results for 2020 showed positive ratings and marked improvements since the first survey conducted in 2016 in a number of important categories.

Survey highlights include:

  • Residents of Cedar Rapids continue to report a positive quality of life, with 81 percent of residents favorably rating the city as a place to live.
  • A majority of Cedar Rapids’ residents are satisfied with their neighborhoods as a place to live and progressively perceive Cedar Rapids as a good place to retire, with an increase of 11 percent in positive rating since 2016.
  • Eight in ten residents gave positive ratings to Cedar Rapids as a place to raise children, planned to remain in the community for the next five years, and would recommend living in Cedar Rapids.
  • Cost of living, employment opportunities, and residents working in Cedar Rapids rated higher in comparison to benchmark communities.
  • Residents gave favorable ratings to areas of public safety, particularly police, fire, ambulance/EMS, and fire prevention services.

“Cedar Rapids tends to receive strong ratings across all facets of community livability, and the 2020 survey was no exception,” said Jade Arocha, Senior Research Analyst, National Research Center. “Most items on the survey received ratings similar to those observed in prior years. Ratings related to affordability and employment in Cedar Rapids were particularly strong, with several of these exceeding national averages.”

City Council and staff utilize the results of the survey to help with future community visioning and goal setting.

“It is essential for us to conduct resident outreach in order to gather information about the needs and perceptions of our citizens and ensure decisions are reflective of the public’s interests,” said Jeff Pomeranz, Cedar Rapids City Manager. “This year’s survey results show we are making significant progress and improving in areas that are most important to residents.”

Cedar Rapids NCS surveys have been conducted every other year, in 2016, 2018 and 2020. The complete NCS Community Livability Report is available here.

About The National Community Survey:

The City of Cedar Rapids contracted with National Research Center, Inc. to participate in The NCS™, an instrument that was developed in partnership with the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) in 2001 to provide cities with a low-cost, high-quality method to conduct market research.

The National Community Survey™ (The NCS™) was among the first scientific surveys developed to gather resident opinion on a range of community issues, and has been used in more than 350 jurisdictions across 46 states. The NCS™ is a high-quality cost-effective scientific survey of resident opinion and an important benchmarking tool that allows for comparison among communities. Communities using The NCS™ have reported that the tool helped improve performance, strengthen communications with community stakeholders, and identify clear priorities for use in goal and budget setting.

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