10 April 2018
The results of a poll to find out how the government can improve St Helier’s open spaces has been published.
Approximately 1000 people responded to an online survey on open space carried out by the Department of the Environment. The results will be used in work to improve town. The regeneration of St Helier is a strategic objective of the Council of Ministers.
82 per cent of those who responded said they made use of town’s open spaces. People say they choose a space to visit because it’s convenient or close by and safety is also an important consideration for a quarter of respondents. People who didn’t use St Helier’s open spaces said it was because they were too busy.
People expressed concerns about anti-social behaviour in shared public spaces and the use of drink and drugs. Many respondents also discussed open spaces and dogs – giving their views on dog mess, whether dogs should be on or off the lead, and allowed in parks and on beaches.
The Minister for the Environment, Deputy Steve Luce said “The survey paints a largely positive picture, with a lot of people making use of St Helier’s spaces easily and quickly on foot. However, I take on board what people have said about anti-social behaviour and will be sharing the results with the Future St Helier Group – and the St Helier Constable in particular, who is already addressing this issue with the recent appointment of park wardens.”
He continued: “Thanks to those who took part we have a much more informed picture of how people use town’s open spaces and how to improve them and this will be used in plans published later this year.”
Deputy Luce said that as town had limited space for new open space developments, the focus is most likely to be on improving existing spaces through better design, facilities and management. However, he would continue to explore options for new space when the opportunity rose – for example, like the extension of the Millennium Town Park.
Report on the Open Spaces poll
St Helier’s most visited parks
- Parade Gardens
- Millennium Park
- Howard Davis Park
- Peoples Park
- Area around the Waterfront and Castle Quay
All respondents: More than 90 per cent said they have access to a garden, balcony or communal space where they live.
St Helier residents only: 18 per cent* or around 7,000 people said they don’t have access to any outdoor space at home.
The top six things people would like to see in future spaces are:
- Somewhere to sit
- Public toilets
*Many homes in town are split up and occupied by multiple families or individuals. New residential space standards mean all new development must give people access to private or communal amenity space, so this number should fall in time as standards of housing improve.