By: Mallory Bateman & Natalie Young
Note: The opinions expressed are those of the author alone and do not reflect an institutional position of the Gardner Institute. We hope the opinions shared contribute to the marketplace of ideas and help people as they formulate their own INFORMED DECISIONS™.
Today the Census Bureau released the 2020 census redistricting geographic support products for Utah. The decennial census is known for producing demographic insights into communities across the nation by tallying both population and housing. Geography is a fundamental aspect of this once-a-decade operation. Your address determined how your household was invited to participate in the census, the type of outreach your community received, and is also an important element in the Census Bureau quality assurance process.
The Census Bureau provides data within two types of boundaries: statistical and legal. Statistical boundaries depend on population thresholds and typically follow features like roads, power lines, and rivers. Legal boundaries are more familiar, like city, county, and state boundaries. You can learn more about all of the Census Bureau geographies here.
These geographic products, available for public download here, provide the reference geography for the upcoming demographic data releases. These materials include updates to both statistical and legal boundaries that have occurred throughout the past decade. All boundaries reference January 1, 2020.
Geographies change for several reasons. A city or town may be legally created or disso