Why It's Important
Nov 19, 2013 02:50PM ● Published by tina
In October, the city invited the residents of Southlake to participate in the 2013 Citizens Satisfaction Survey. For more than 10 years, the city has made the survey a cornerstone of strategic planning and development, and I'd like to take a moment this month to explain why.
Back in 2009, we received a message from our citizens that was loud and clear — the city needed more sidewalks and to be more pedestrian friendly. City staff got to work and came up with a plan to help determine where the sidewalks should be constructed. We even won a grant that helped pay for many of the sidewalks currently being built on Southlake Boulevard. The proof: More than 35,000 linear feet of sidewalk has been constructed since 2009. But even with six-plus miles of new, walkable surfaces, we still have a ways to go, but I have every confidence that we will get there.
Another example is safety and security. Did you know that NETCOM, the city's joint emergency 911 partnership with the cities of Keller, Colleyville and Westlake, received more than 144,000 calls for service in 2012? You told us in 2009 and again in 2011 that emergency response and preparedness was important. In Southlake, the fire department is using information from each call to reduce response times. Because no matter where you live, it's critical that emergency help be there in a matter of minutes.
What I think is important to emphasize is the city's willingness to listen to the feedback it receives and find solutions for now and in the future. That means more sidewalks with a long-term commitment to build them in existing neighborhoods and new developments; improved safety for students, with a police officer at every CISD school; supporting businesses, both large and small, that choose to make Southlake home; and many other things. All of this is possible because of what you told us in surveys, phone calls, letters or simple conversations.
Although the city provides many ways for you to tell us what you think, the survey is our opportunity to really focus on specific areas that you have told us are important. We take the results very seriously and over the next 18 to 20 months, you will see the results of the 2013 survey come alive. If you participated in this year's survey, thank you. If you didn't, there are still many other ways to let us hear from you. Go to CityOfSouthlake.com and click on the Contact Us page, which will give you access to all departments in the city including the city council. Also, consider using social media sites like Facebook and Twitter to connect with us. If it’s during business hours, please call us at 817-748-8400.
Finally, I hope that you have marked Nov. 23 on your calendar for the city’s annual Home for the Holidays celebration. This year, I’ve been told the snow hill will be bigger and better than ever and our tree lighting will kick off a season of fun and giving the whole family can enjoy together. To get the full details, please visit Southlake Home For The Holidays.
See you in Southlake!
John Terrell, vice president of commercial development for DFW Airport, has spent countless volunteer hours in service to the City of Southlake. He served two terms on the city council prior to becoming elected Southlake's Mayor in 2009 and again in 2012. Married to wife Joanne and father to two Dragons, the 2012 Southlake Citizen of the Year has called Southlake home for more than 15 years.