Watch CBS News

Poll shows "People really like Boston."

Survey says people love Boston but don't feel the city loves them back
Survey says people love Boston but don't feel the city loves them back 02:45

BOSTON - "The state of our city is strong," said Boston Mayor Michelle Wu back in January. And according to a rare non-election-year poll of Boston voters conducted by the Boston Policy Institute (BPI), a solid majority agree with her.

"People really like Boston," says BPI Executive Director Greg Maynard. "It's clear that people really love the city and they want to stay here."
There's been concern over polls showing many younger residents are considering leaving Boston. This poll finds a solid majority are not, even those Generation Z voters aged 18 to 27.

Despite the love, there are some problems   

But sky-high housing prices and other cost-of-living pressures are taking their toll.

Asked how things here are going compared to five years ago, just 17% said they're better while nearly twice that - 32% - said they're worse. Make that 41% of Generation Xers, 44- to 59-year-olds.

"When you have the same number of people who are saying they really like Boston as say that there's real issues with cost of living and they don't think the city's doing a very good job dealing with them, I think that shows people can really love a place and feel like it doesn't love them back," says Maynard.

What are the issues?   

It's not that these voters blame Mayor Wu. Her approval rating is strong. But given the lingering burden of living costs, struggling public schools and faltering public transit, no wonder their appreciation is mixed with anxiety.
"People are really ready for the city to take action, but they don't have a lot of faith that these problems are going to get solved," says Maynard.

In a city famous for contentious factions that can sometimes grind progress to a halt, there's some unity showing in this survey on issues like school building consolidation, something many voters resisted in the past. And there were few significant differences between demographic groups in how they saw the city and its issues.

The moral of the story for the mayor is, voters like her talk of change and have her back on much of it, but they also want results - sooner rather than later.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.