Thank you to all of you who came to the meeting and public comment period last week. If you stayed, you know the discussion took us until about 2 am. In addition to all the feedback you heard there (or can watch on CityTV) I wanted to share the results of the survey I did and on which about 70 of you responded (out of 2,500 ward 2 residents).
Overall, 21 said they liked or strongly liked the current concept and 43 dislike or strongly dislike it. Or 31% to 63%. (In other words, sadly its polling worse than Donald Trump.) Luckily, we and NDC still have a lot of room to change and improve the concept.
I find surveys helpful, not just for what each question says separately but how they relate to one another. So what this question shows is that even among those folks who like the current design (or were ambivalent to it) there is dislike of the third story. Here is the response below on the third floor - 67% oppose or strongly oppose it.
No one wants to see less ground floor pedestrian and outside space. Many (34%) are satisfied with the amount on offer now. 62% want to see more. Interest in this kind of space - public gathering areas where you don't necessarily have to buy something to be there - was an area of strong interest throughout the process. In our discussion last week, Council also talked about different kinds of desirable space. Outdoor restaurant seating, upper story space that could be reserved (or rented) and used for meetings/gatherings, and truly public space. In addition, there are also ideas to make the wooded hill more accessible. I asked city staff for background on county zoning requirements for public space, because there are requirements that are additional to what we included in our development agreement.
In addition, when I asked, "Do you want to see more or less indoor space that is available for unpaid community uses (i.e. controlled access that would need to be locked some of the time but still free) compared to what is shown in the recent presentation. This could include seating, shared dining space such as is present in the Union Market, etc?" 52% said 'more' and 36% said about the same.
From this, I take it that people feel even more strongly about truly public space than retail or other gathering spots but that there are strong views in support of both.
In addition, 60 people ( 88%) said they supported or strongly supported having a restaurant on the ground floor with outdoor seating (7% opposed and the rest were neutral). This is the strongest response in the survey.
The responses on the loading configuration were the most interesting to me. Basically people don't know if the lay-by will work, with about equal numbers of people saying, accept, don't accept and don't know.
The final question on the survey I sent around asked about the traffic studies. Most people said that both NDC and the city's traffic studies are important (24%) or very important (64%) to them.
If you haven't responded to the survey, feel free to do so https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/6GBZBHQ