Wellingtonians absolutely positive about quality of life

22 October 2014

The 2014 Quality of Life survey released today shows Wellington is performing exceptionally well – with residents reporting the highest overall quality of life in this year’s survey.

Mayor Celia Wade-Brown says that the results are great news for Wellington.

“Wellington’s positive results were seen across a wide range of areas – from pride in the city’s look and feel, to acceptance of diversity, and use of public transport. Wellingtonians are particularly enthusiastic about the arts scene, and also generally report feeling safe in the city after dark,” says Mayor Wade-Brown.

The biennial Quality of Life survey measures the perceptions of over 5000 residents living in six of the country’s largest urban areas. Conducted by research company Nielsen, the survey is jointly funded by the participating councils – Wellington City Council, Auckland Council, Hutt City Council, Porirua City Council, Christchurch City Council and Dunedin City Council.

It asks residents about a range of topics including perceptions of housing, safety, sense of community and the sense of pride they have in their local area.

“Our results show that Wellington continues to be an attractive place to live, work and do business with 89 percent of Wellingtonians reporting pride in the city’s look and feel. Our investment in urban design, public art, events and facilities provides an excellent return for our residents” says the Mayor.

“Wellington leads in reducing car use, with the highest levels of walking, bus and cable car use, and motorbike/scooter use. We are second in cycling to Christchurch, and we are continuing to invest in this area as it makes both environmental and economic sense.

“Wellington also comes out top in perceptions of city safety, which is backed up by our position as the only capital city in the world to achieve World Health Organisation (WHO) Safe Community status.”

Notable results for Wellington include:

  • 89% of Wellingtonians report a “good” or better quality of life – compared to the average of 82%
  • 33% perceive their quality of life has increased in the last year – compared with the average 27%
  • 92% agree or strongly agree that Wellington is a great place to live
  • 89% of Wellingtons have pride in the city’s look and feel – 10% higher than the average
  • Just 62% of Wellingtonians rely on the car as a main mode of transport – compared with the average of 84%
  • Wellington gets the best marks for safe (74%), easy to access (86%) and reliable (56%) public transport
  • 87% report Wellington has a culturally rich and diverse arts scene
  • 76% of Wellingtonians see the city as fairly safe or better walking alone after dark
  • 98% of Wellingtonians see the city as fairly safe or better in the central city during the day

Though the results are overwhelmingly positive for Wellington, there are still areas for improvement. Specifically, some perceptions on complex issues are raised, although they may indicate a more compassionate attitude rather than a greater problem:

  • 74% of Wellingtonians perceive alcohol and drugs as “a bit of a problem” or worse
  • 75% of Wellingtonians perceive begging on the street to be “a bit of a problem” or worse, nearly twice as high as the overall result. 

See the full set of these topline results and more information on the 2014 Quality of Life survey website