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Departing Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts is the most popular head of government.

Vancouver, BC – Departing Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts holds the best approval rating across Metro Vancouver, while the municipal governments of the Tri-Cities and Burnaby get the highest overall rating from residents, a new Insights West poll has found.

The online survey of a representative sample of 2,138 Metro Vancouver residents outlines a wide range of concerns from citizens. In Vancouver, almost half of residents (46%) identify housing as the top issue facing the city. In Surrey, a similarly high proportion (48%) believes crime is the most important topic.

Housing is also top of mind in Richmond (28%) and Burnaby (21%). Transportation is the most important issue in four areas: the North Shore (34%), Delta, New Westminster and White Rock (29%), the Tri-Cities (28%) and Langley City and Langley Township (27%). In Abbotsford, housing is practically tied with poverty (21% and 20% respectively). In Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows, economic development is the main worry (31%).


“The large sample size allows us to zero in on municipalities and areas, and that’s where some of the glaring differences emerge,” says Mario Canseco, Vice President, Public Affairs, at Insights West. “Transportation is a key area of concern in 11 municipalities, but not in Vancouver and Surrey, where housing and crime definitely dominate the agenda.”

The average approval rating for mayors in Metro Vancouver is 61%. Across the region, Surrey’s Dianne Watts holds the best numbers (74%), followed by Burnaby’s Derek Corrigan (67%), Abbotsford’s Bruce Banman (65%), Richmond’s Malcolm Brodie (60%) and Vancouver’s Gregor Robertson (52%).

Residents were asked to rate their municipal government overall on a 10-point scale, where 10 means “excellent” and 1 means “poor”. The average rating for all municipalities is 6.3 points.

The governments with the highest rating are Tri-Cities (6.8), Burnaby (also 6.8), Delta, New Westminster and White Rock (6.6) and Abbotsford (also 6.6), followed by Surrey (6.5), the North Shore (6.4), Richmond (6.3), Vancouver (5.9), Langley City and Langley Township (5.7) and Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows (5.5).

Other questions, including government scores on specific services and dimensions, sentiment for change in municipality and perceptions on democratic structures, can be accessed on the detailed data tabulations link below.

About Insights West:

Insights West is a progressive, Western-based, full-service marketing research company. It exists to serve the market with insights-driven research solutions and interpretive analysis through leading-edge tools, normative databases, and senior-level expertise across a broad range of public and private sector organizations. Insights West is based in Vancouver and Calgary and has seventeen employees.

About this Release:

Results are based on an online study conducted from September 24 to October 5, 2014, among 2,138 residents of 19 municipalities in the Metro Vancouver Regional District, who are aged 18+ and are Your Insights panel members. is Insights West’s in-house access panel offering on-demand samples for both clients and research suppliers looking for Western Canadian populations. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for gender, age and region. While statistical margins of error are arguably not applicable to online panels/online studies of this nature, we have assumed that the same margins of error apply as if it were a true unweighted random probability sample with a margin of error of +/- 2.1 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty. To view the detailed data tabulations, click here.

For further information, please contact:

Mario Canseco
Vice President, Public Affairs, Insights West


Photograph: Ruth Hartnup