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NYC Resident Feedback Survey: Issues Requiring More Attention from City Government

October 20, 2017

The Citizens Budget Commission (CBC) enlisted the National Research Center (NRC) to conduct a citywide resident survey in January 2017 to gauge satisfaction with municipal services and quality of life in New York City. This is the third report of those results.

In addition to rating specific services and quality of life indicators, survey recipients were asked to identify up to three important issues they believed required more attention from New York City government. Of the 9,873 survey participants, 8,203 responded with at least one issue; a total of 20,599 issues were named. These responses were coded into the broad categories.

Citywide, the three most pressing issues identified were infrastructure, safety/crime, and housing issues, with each issue named by approximately 29 percent of respondents. Infrastructure included responses calling for improvements to roads, bridges, public transportation, and local facilities. Safety/crime included issues related to crime, such as guns or gangs, or feelings of safety (but did not include police-community relations). Housing issues ranged from need for affordable housing, issues with landlords and/or Section 8 vouchers, building permits for new construction, and other issues related to development and gentrification.

Variation by Borough

The top 3 citywide issues were also the top 3 issues in Queens and Brooklyn, the most populous boroughs, although they varied in priority. Housing was cited most frequently in Brooklyn and Manhattan (34 percent and 33 percent of respondents, respectively). Safety/crime was cited most frequently in the Bronx and Staten Island (38 percent in both). Infrastructure was cited most frequently in Queens (34 percent).

Other priorities cited include traffic in Staten Island (38 percent), schools and education in the Bronx (23 percent), and homelessness in Manhattan (27 percent). Traffic concerns included traffic, ease of travel and mobility throughout the city, and parking regulations and enforcement. Schools and education included improving schools and afterschool programs, as well as school buildings and facilities. Homelessness included calls for more services, as well as greater enforcement against loitering.

Issues requiring more attention from NYC government by Borough, 2017
Issues requiring more attention from city government, 2017

Variation by Community District

Infrastructure issues greatly concerned residents in 47 of 59 community districts citywide. Safety/crime was a top issue in 43 community districts, including all districts in the Bronx and Staten Island. Housing was a top concern in 36 districts, including all districts in the Bronx. Other issues most commonly cited by community districts include traffic in 15 districts, homelessness in 14 districts (mostly in Manhattan), and schools and education in 13 districts.  

The map below provides results by community district. Click on a community district, or use the drop-down menu, to see the most pressing issues identified by residents in that district.

Most common issues identified by community district, 2017

Download Top Issues in Bronx

Top Issues in the Bronx

Download Top Issues in Brooklyn

Top Issues in Brooklyn

Download Top Issues in Manhattan

Top Issues in Manhattan

Download Top Issues in Queens

Top Issues in Queens

Download Top Issues in Staten Island

Top Issues in Staten Island