Council Presented 2020 Resident Satisfaction Survey

The 2020 Satisfaction Survey results are in and residents continue to demonstrate increased satisfaction with the overall quality of services and quality of life in Des Moines. 

Des Moines rated significantly higher than average for cities with a population over 250,000 residents in 25 of the 41 national benchmarking categories measured:

Service Provided To Residents Des Moines National Average 
Quality of City Libraries 91% 75% 
Quality of Fire Protection  88%  78% 
Quality of Police Protection  68%  59% 
City Parks  80%  69% 
Garbage Collection  89%  69%
Overall Feeling of Safety  75%  54%


“I am very happy with the results of this survey, because these results show that we are continuing to move a very high bar even higher for Des Moines residents,” said City Manager Scott Sanders. “We will continue to push to provide services and a quality of life that our residents can be proud of.”

While Des Moines continues to outperform other cities nationally, the results from this year’s resident survey provided important insights into the primary areas that the City of Des Moines should focus its resources on to make improvements for its residents: Enforcement of city ordinances, neighborhood and major streets, visibility of police in neighborhoods and public involvement in decision-making.

“It’s nice to see that the results of this survey align closely with how the City of Des Moines has invested its revenues from first year of the Local Option Sales and Service Tax,” said Mayor Frank Cownie. “These results give me a great deal of confidence that we are aligning our City priorities with the priorities of our residents to drive the results that they have asked for.”

A random sample of 864 residents from all over the city were asked to respond to a series of questions. The survey focused on several areas of service including: Police, Fire, Parks and Recreation, Public Works, Community Development, Public Libraries, Communication with Residents, and overall Life in Des Moines. Similar surveys have been conducted since 2004. They have become an important tool in the public policy-making process and have helped influence funding decisions by the City Council.

These results were shared with Des Moines City Council on Monday, November 30 and the presentation is available for review on the City of Des Moines website.

Al Setka
Chief Communications Officer, City Manager’s Office
(515) 283-4057

About the City of Des Moines
The City of Des Moines: Iowa’s capital city and local government servicing more than 217,000 residents, 51+ neighborhoods, over 4,000 acres of parkland and 81 miles of trails. The City of Des Moines stands to be a financially strong city with exceptional city services, fostering an involved community in a customer friendly atmosphere. Visit DSM.cityFacebook and Twitter for more information.