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Traffic Calming within Neighbourhoods

Common challenge. Fairly simple, yet very effective solution!

PERSPECTIVE:

While targeted research can appear to be a daunting and time-consuming task, it is essential in providing specific community improvements. Particularly noteworthy are those that bring about positive change in residents’ safety and wellbeing. Don’t let the importance of this get overshadowed by the seemingly massive task of targeting your research.

Kent Waugh - Managing Partner

The Challenge

Ensuring each home in the neighbourhood has an opportunity to provide their single vote in favour or opposed to local area changes.

Each neighbourhood has its unique features and infrastructure, making research conducted in one area, not always applicable to another. Just because one neighbourhhood may be in favour of specific programs such as traffic calming doesn't mean all neighbours or neighbourhoods feel the same way.

The Solution

A three-part survey process which gives every home a single vote.

Several years ago, one of our client partners approached ClikHere.ca's parent company, The W Group, to help them design the most efficient yet secure approach to measuring the level of support for specific traffic calming devices within a defined area.

After reviewing past approaches used by the Engineering Department, a unique research plan was developed and implemented. The method comprised of three components:

  1. A letter-based survey invitation addressed to each home within the study area.

  2. Each survey invitation contained a unique access code for the related survey to ensure that only residents with the correct access code could access the online response survey.

  3. An online survey which clearly defined the study area, the project objectives and various approaches applied. Residents were able to review all related material and indicate the solution(s) of their choice. Respondents end the survey by confirming their name and home address. An ample timeline with a strict deadline for submission was provided.

The Results

High-levels of resident participation and clear direction.

The now countless times we have administered this survey process on behalf of client partners have always yielded high levels of resident participation. Evidence-based decision-making for the Engineering Department is a crucial outcome of this effort.

 

Without going to the extent of developing a plebiscite (including all the related costs and political challenges) the municipalities gain clear evidence of neighbourhood support. All were using a very focused, time and cost-sensitive approach to public consultation. An unexpected, positive outcome was that respondents felt the targeted invitations and support material provided them with a sufficient number of options (increasing the likelihood of capturing residents’ attention) and an excellent opportunity to respond. This approach communicated to residents that their opinions matter.

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