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Survey: support for downtown historic district


Survey: support for downtown historic district

The historic Decatur GA courthouse
Decatur GA courthouse

Decatur GA courthouse

A recent survey of 478 Decatur residents showed strong support for the creation of a downtown historic district, with eight in 10 residents saying they would like to see it happen.

That’s one of the many details contained in the city’s 2014 citizen survey, given to 1,200 residents selected at random. The response rate was 40 percent, according to a presentation given during the Sept. 2 City Commission meeting.

Here is the wording of the question:

“Local historic districts require design review for construction and renovation and prohibit demolition of historic buildings. Currently, the Decatur Square is not in a local historic district. To what extent would you support or oppose the creation of a local historic district that would include the Decatur Square and surrounding blocks?”

Here’s how residents answered it:

Source: City of Decatur

Source: City of Decatur

Other findings worth a mention:

– A majority of respondents – 55 percent – expressed some level of support for “establishing a 25 mph speed limit on most Decatur roadways.”

– A rating of the city’s technology services found a strong level of dissatisfaction with the city’s free wireless internet service. According to the survey, 16 percent of respondents rated the WiFi service as poor, the highest level of dissatisfaction for any technology service offered by the city. The city’s website received the most positive marks, with 40 percent rating it as good. Here is a bar chart showing responses to this question. In most cases, respondents answered “don’t know.”

Click to enlarge. Source: City of Decatur.

Click to enlarge. Source: City of Decatur.

Click to enlarge. Source: City of Decatur.

Click to enlarge. Source: City of Decatur.

– The survey found that 52 percent of respondents talked to their neighbors at least twice a week.

– It also found that 77 percent of respondents never watched a City Commission meeting on television or online, and that 67 percent of them have never attended a public meeting.

– Of the people who responded to the survey, 79 percent said they’ve never participated in a club or civic group in the city.

Here are the city services that had the highest percentage of “excellent” ratings from residents:

Fire – 60 percent

Recycling – 52 percent

Police – 49 percent

Garbage collection – 48 percent

Yard waste pick up – 47 percent

Here are the city services that got the highest percentage of “poor” ratings from residents:

Traffic signal timing – 23 percent

Street repair – 19 percent

Code enforcement – 15 percent

Sidewalk maintenance – 13 percent

Land use planning and zoning – 11 percent

According to the survey, 25 percent of residents said the city needs better public parking, and 23 percent said the city needs more affordable, quality housing.