Biennial Citizen Survey

The City of Urbandale conducts a biennial (every other year) citizen survey. The survey asks residents to indicate their level of satisfaction with city services, ranging from police services to community growth.

2016 Citizen Survey


The 2016 Citizen Survey was conducted September through November.  The Citizen Survey was delayed from 2015, due to the City's 2015 Special Census.  The final survey reports were presented to the City Council, at its December 13, 2016 Lunch and Learn meeting.    

2016 Citizen Survey Results


Urbandale partnered for the fourth time with the National Citizen Survey (NCS) to conduct the 2016 Urbandale Citizen Survey. The NCS also conducted the city's 2013, 2011 and 2009 surveys. The 2016 survey was mailed to 1,500 random households in Urbandale. In total, 444 completed surveys were received, which yielded at response rate of approximately 30%. The survey was designed to yield a traditional confidence level of 95%, with a margin of error of + or - 5%.

Quality of Life


Almost all residents rated the quality of life in Urbandale as excellent or good (94%).  This rating has remained steady since the 2009 survey results. Additionally, 97% of respondents rated Urbandale as "excellent (59%) or "good" (38%) as a place to live. The vast majority (91%) of residents believe the overall quality of city services received are "excellent" or "good."
2016 Overall Quality of Life Graph

Trends Over Time


The survey reports also discuss trends over time (PDF), comparing the 2016 ratings for the City to its previous survey results in 2009, 2011 and 2013. Overall, ratings in Urbandale for 2016 remained stable. Of the 129 items for which comparisons were available:
  • 11 showed an increase in ratings
  • 2 items showed a decrease
  • 116 items were rated similarly
2016 Place to Live Chart

Demographic Subgroups


The city also cross tabulated survey questions by demographic characteristics (PDF), which included number of years in Urbandale, presence of children 17 or under in the household, age and gender. Notable differences between demographic subgroups include:
  • Residents with children tended to rate Urbandale as a place to live and as a place to raise children higher than residents without children.
  • Respondents aged 18-34 tended to give lower ratings to several aspects of general Community Characteristics, including the overall quality of life, their neighborhoods as places to live, Urbandale as place to raise children and the city as a place to retire.
  • Where differences occurred, female participants tended to give higher ratings than their male counterparts.

Geographic Subgroups


Additionally, the city cross tabulated survey questions by geographic area (PDF), Polk County or Dallas County. Notable differences between geographic subgroups include:
  • Residents of Dallas County were more likely to talk or visit with neighbors than Polk County residents.
  • Polk County residents gave higher ratings than Dallas County residents to the job the City of Urbandale does at distinguishing itself from surrounding communities and promoting its services to city residents.

2013 & Other Past Survey Results


Urbandale conducted an in-house survey in 1999, 2002, 2004, and 2006. The NCS was used to conduct the 2009, 2011 and 2013 surveys. Review these past survey result reports.