Level of cultural satisfaction lowest in Valletta, survey finds

79-city survey finds Valletta the only city where fewer than 50% feel they are satisfied with their city’s cultural facilities.

James Debono
25 October 2013, 12:00am

Valletta (37%) is the only city of 79 European cities where fewer than 50% of respondents say that they are satisfied with their city's cultural facilities.

Valletta also emerges as the only EU capital city where less than a majority of respondents say they are satisfied with their cultural facilities, a category which includes theaters, museums, concert halls and libraries.

In all 10 EU capitals, the level of satisfaction with their cultural facilities is higher than 80%.

This emerges from a Eurobarometer survey conducted in December 2012, which was published last week.

The survey was conducted among 503 residents hailing from the north and south harbour regions of Malta.

Valletta is also one of 11 cities where fewer than half of respondents said they were satisfied with public transport in their city.

Only 37% were satisfied with public transport in Valletta. Level of satisfaction was also low in Roma (32%), Naples (23%) and Palermo (14%).

Satisfaction regarding the state of streets and buildings in respondents' neighbourhoods is low in many EU capitals.

Valletta is one of eleven EU capitals namely Athens, Rome, Sofia, Bucharest, Lisbon, Vilnius, Riga, Tallinn, Valletta, Bratislava and Madrid, which rank among the 20 least satisfied cities.

Air quality is also a cause of dissatisfaction in Valletta.

In fact, air quality is the most important issue for 52% of residents. This makes air quality the top concern of the residents living in the north and south harbour regions.

In 58 cities, a majority of respondents are satisfied with air quality, and in 19 of these cities the level of satisfaction is at least 80%. Satisfaction is highest in Rostock (95%), Newcastle and Groningen (both 90%).

But Valletta is among nine EU capitals among the 20 least satisfied cities: Bucharest (17%), Athens (21%), Madrid (25%), Sofia (26%), Paris (33%), Roma (34%), Valletta (35%), Budapest (37%) and Prague (39%).

Valletta is also among seven EU capitals where fewer than half of respondents are satisfied with their city's sports facilities. These include Athens, Bratislava, Sofia, Vilnius, Bucharest, Valletta and Riga.

Noise did not appear among the top three issues for respondents in any of the cities surveyed. However, it should be noted that this issue was cited by a third of respondents in Prague (33%) and by 22% in Valletta.

Foreigners in the city

The survey also shows that 58% of Maltese residents think that the presence of foreigners is good for Valletta. This indicates that the Maltese are more suspicious of foreigners than residents in Stockholm, Dublin, Brussels and Paris. But they are more positive about the presence of foreigners than residents in Rome and Naples.

75% of Maltese residents feel safe living in Valletta. The level of safety is higher than Marseilles, where only 32% feel safe, but lower than Amsterdam, where 84% feel safe. Luxembourg, where 91% feel safe, emerges as one of the safest cities.

68% think that most residents in Valletta can be trusted.

This compares well to Athens, where only 20% think that a majority of fellow inhabitants are worthy of trust. But it is significantly lower than cities like Oslo and Reykjavik, where 81% think that most residents in their city are trustworthy.

What the Maltese think of their capital city
Percentage of satisfied respondents
Cultural facilities 37
Public transport 37
State of streets 52
Sports facilities 45
Public spaces 42
Retail 82
Air quality 35
Noise level 52
Cleanliness 53
Life in general 88
James Debono is MaltaToday's chief reporter on environment, planning and land use issues, ...