Survey finds traffic concerns, overall satisfaction in Town of Herndon

Traffic in downtown Herndon (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

Traffic concerns were among the top issues flagged in a survey of Town of Herndon residents.

Despite those frustrations, the survey by Priority Metric Group found high levels of satisfaction with town services and quality of life in the town.

Priority Metrics Group owner John Barrett emphasized that the results are based on a weighted sample, specifically for household income and ethnicity, in a presentation to the Herndon Town Council on July 11.

He said respondents were repeatedly instructed that the survey is intended to evaluate town services, not issues beyond the town’s purview.

Most respondents — a little over 60% — in the survey were white, while 16% of the sample was Hispanic, 15% was Asian and 7% was Black. Comparatively, the town’s population is 31% Hispanic, 41% white, 14% Asian, and 6% Black, according to the latest U.S. Census data.

The average survey participant lived in the town for 13 years, and 84% worked outside of the town. Roughly 15% of respondents plan to move from the town in the next year, largely due to the cost of living or housing.

The survey found that most respondents were very satisfied with professionalism of the police, trash and recycling services, and customer service at both the Herndon Municipal Center and the Herndon Community Center.

Satisfaction was lowest when it came to traffic flow, with just 52.3% of respondents saying they’re “satisfied” or “very satisfied responses” compared to 64.7% in a 2018 survey.

The survey also gauged thoughts on the conditions of the town’s sidewalks and streets, the overall appearance of the town, the police department’s ability to address neighborhood problems, traffic and parking code enforcement, and access to town facilities for people with disabilities.

Overall, the town continued to receive average performance ratings on six criteria, but declined on six others, including overall appearance and neighborhood safety. The most substantial decline was related to traffic.

Key issues related to the appearance of the town include challenges on Elden Street, the stalled redevelopment of downtown Herndon, and overall trash and cleanliness of the town and parks.
Still, 88% of residents are satisfied or very satisfied with quality of life in the town.

Most respondents pointed to Herndon’s small town appeal as the community’s most magnetic factor by far.

“Even though you’re kind of in the middle of this hub of activity right next to Dulles, right next to D.C…is this small community feel,” Barrett said. “People love it.”