Survey: Atlantans Worry More About Traffic Than Crime, Economy

More than a quarter of people surveyed say transportation is their biggest concern in Atlanta.
More than a quarter of people surveyed say transportation is their biggest concern in Atlanta.
Credit Su-Laine Yeo Brodsky / flickr.com/syeo
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The biggest concern for people in the Atlanta area is transportation, according to a survey released by the Atlanta Regional Commission on Friday morning. Crime came in second place. The economy, in third, has become less of a concern as it’s improved.  

That all makes sense to Mike Alexander, director of the research and analytics division of the ARC. He said people generally feel upbeat.

“The economy has been so much better for metropolitan Atlanta even compared to 2013, that it’s just really fallen off the radar for a lot of people,” he said. “Naturally, if you’re working again, and you’re getting on our highways every morning, you think a lot about transportation.”

Of the 5,029 people surveyed, 27 percent said they think transportation is the biggest problem in Atlanta. Asked how to fix traffic, 44 percent said they think extending public transit is the best way; 31 percent said they’d improve roads and highways.

Most people surveyed said Atlanta is a good place to live. It’s got job opportunities; they’re at least somewhat involved in their communities, and they don’t think the future will be any worse.

This is the third year the Atlanta Regional Commission has conducted its quality-of-life survey. This year it had some new questions, developed in conjunction with the United Way of Atlanta.

Many of those get at how involved people feel in their communities, including a sense of neighborliness. Asked if people are willing to help their neighbors, Atlantans gave a resounding yes, with 75 percent of people saying they either agree or strongly agree.

“We weren’t that surprised by the high level responses,” said Alexander. “But again, that’s what we already know about the region, you know. People are very willing and committed to helping their neighbors.”

The survey included 13 counties: Cherokee, Fayette, Coweta, Butts, Henry, Paulding, Gwinnett, Cobb, Rockdale, Douglas, Fulton, DeKalb and Clayton. This was the first year Butts, Paulding and Coweta were included.