Liverpool city centre is seen as a clean, safe and vibrant area with excellent shops and leisure facilities, according to new research.
The Liverpool city centre perceptions survey for 2010, which is funded by the city council's city centre management team, Citysafe, Liverpool Vision, Liverpool Commercial District Partnership, the BID Company and Merseytravel, found that:
- Eight out of ten people believe the city centre has improved in the last year and nine out of ten are confident about its future
- 99% of all people interviewed feel safe in the city centre during the day; 70% feel safe in the evening
- The number who said they felt safe at night was 44%, this was an increase of 19% on the previous year
- Views about how clean the city centre is have risen markedly with more than 81% of people surveyed giving a positive rating to its cleanliness. Its rating has risen each year from 2007 when it was only 35%
- Nine out of ten people give a positive rating to the city centre shops and rate it better than Manchester city centre, the Trafford Centre and other locations in the region as a retail centre
However, the survey also found that people interviewed wanted more green spaces and landscaping and concern was expressed over the level of parking charges compared with other cities.
Liverpool City Council said this year's survey is the largest carried out since it started in 2006. A total of 1,623 people were interviewed including both city centre residents and visitors. They were asked about a range of issues including cleanliness, shopping, crime, public transport and the environment.
Cllr Joe Anderson, leader of Liverpool City Council, said: "They show we have maintained the momentum from our success as Capital of Culture year.
"We are reaping the benefit of the massive investment in our retail and leisure sectors. We are now widely seen as one of the country's leading shopping areas and we have a thriving night-time economy.
"There are areas of concern which we will have to address including looking at cost-effective ways of making the centre greener and highlight hidden gems and existing high quality green space in the city centre.
"And, we are very well aware that there are challenging times ahead. All the partners involved in delivering services to the city centre will have to work hard to keep up the standards which have been set and which saw us recently awarded a Purple Flag which recognises a safe, clean and well-managed night time economy in the city centre.
"But with the growing confidence there is about this area and I believe that we can continue to have a vibrant, safe and thriving city centre."
The Purple Flag scheme is managed by the Association of Town Centre Management which works alongside the Purple Flag Advisory Board, a partnership made up of organisations including central and local government, police, business and consumers.