97 percent rate quality of life in Champlin as ‘excellent’ or ‘good’;
enjoy good neighborhoods, friendly people, short commutes
Bill Morris, of Decision Resources Ltd., presented the findings of the 2012 resident survey at the Jan. 28 council meeting revealing Champlin residents are more satisfied with their community than five years ago. The city began thee practice of conducting 5-year surveys beginning in 2002. There was a solid base of satisfaction discovered in the 2007 survey and the 2012 survey shows a 15 percent increase.
As part of the survey process, 400 households representing the four wards throughout Champlin were randomly sampled via a phone survey. They were asked for their input on a number of topics involving city services, resident communications, municipal facilities and several other aspects involving municipal operations.
According to the report prepared by City Administrator Bret Heitkamp, the survey results will serve as a guiding document during the city’s strategic planning session Feb. 8-9 where the city council will formally establish the organizations goals and priorities for budget years 2013 and 2014.
The following is an initial look at some of the survey results addressing quality of life including jobs and demographics both for the city and the survey participants.
QUALITY OF LIFE
Of those surveyed, 97 percent ranked quality of life in Champlin as excellent (34 precent) or good (63 percent). Additionally, 88 percent feel the city has kept pace with population growth. The top five community characteristics identified as what residents like most about living in Champlin include:
• 19 percent — housing and neighborhoods
• 18 percent — friendly people
• 16 percent — location
• 14 percent — small town ambience
• 10 percent — rural nature and open spaces
Respondents were also asked what they thought was the most serious issue facing Champlin today:
• 13 percent — lack of jobs and businesses
• 10 percent — too much growth
• 10 percent high taxes
• 9 percent — rising crime
• 7 percent — traffic congestion
In the 2007 survey, traffic congestion pulled in the most concern with 14 percent ranking it the most serious issue. That figure has dropped in half. Another 22 percent said they believed there were no serious issues facing Champlin. This figure is almost four times higher than the suburban norm and quadruple the level of Champlin’s last survey, all pointing to an overall sense of satisfaction with the city.
“Residents seem satisfied, enthusiastically so, with their lives in the city,” said Miller.
JOBS & COMMUTING
Think you have a longer than average commute to work from Champlin? Compare it to the typical resident who reports a 19.5 minute commute. The national average commute time is 28 percent. A 2011 American Communities survey indicated the median commute time for Twin Cities residents is 24 minutes for those traveling solo.
While 13 percent of working Champlin residents must travel more than 30 minutes to their jobs, nearly 7 out of 10 spend less than 20 minutes per commute. Of that, 30 percent enjoy working from home.
The average commute times for Champlin residents are as follows:
• 15 percent — 10 minutes or less
• 23 percent — 11 to 20 minutes
• 19 percent — 21 to 30 minutes
• 13 percent — over 30 minutes
• 30 percent — No commute (work from home)
A little more than half of Champlin residents work in one of four communities: Champlin, Minneapolis, Maple Grove or Brooklyn Park. Miller said that 93 percent of commuters report they drive alone to their jobs and many indicated they were proud of that fact.
Based on the survey results, Champlin shapes up to be a growing, yet stabilized community with a sizable proportion of newcomers as well as a core of longer term settlers.
This means Champlin residents will likely find that 3 out of 4 of their neighbors have probably lived in the city for about 15 years. In fact, the median residential longevity of adults residing in the community is 15.2 years.
The fourth person in the neighborhood is likely to be a new resident of less than five years (16 percent) or a longtime resident of more than three decades (12 percent). Eighty-five percent own their current homes while 13 percent rent.
The typical household in Champlin includes two adults and one child. Nearly 9 out of 10 households in Champlin have one or more adults under the age of 65 residing there while 17 percent have one more adults over the age of 65. With school-aged or pre-schoolers living in 43 percent of households, just under half of Champlin’s households appear to be comprised of families. However, the survey doesn’t account for infants or toddlers so the exact figure is unknown. More than 1 out of 10 households are comprised solely of senior citizens.
The average survey respondent is 48.9 years old. Residents between 45 and 54 years of age comprise the largest share of respondents (34 percent), followed by those between 35-44 (21 percent), and those between 55-64 (17 percent).
Women and men are equally represented in the survey. Eighty-eight percent identify themselves as white while 6 percent are African-American, 3 percent are Hispanic-Latino, and 2 percent are Asian-Pacific Islanders.
(Editor’s Note: This is the Part One in a multi-part series taking a look at the City of Champlin’s 2012 survey results. In upcoming installments, survey results regarding city services, taxes, public safety and more will be reviewed..)
Contact Mindy Mateuszczyk at firstname.lastname@example.org