Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Updates to CUNY's Census maps

The team at the CUNY Center for Urban Research has updated its interactive maps showing block-level race/ethnicity patterns in 2000 and 2010 in major US cities.

The maps are available at www.urbanresearchmaps.org/comparinator/pluralitymap.htm. Steven Romalewski has a blog post with more detail HERE. The news release is here.

Some updates:

1. Block-level coverage for all of New York State, as well as New Jersey and Connecticut. For example, here are links to Albany and Syracuse and Buffalo and Babylon/Islip on Long Island.

2. More cities. There are now 15 major urban regions mapped (Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Orlando, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Francisco, and Washington D.C.).

3. The maps now have three ways of comparing 2000 and 2010 racial patterns:
- a vertical slider bar dividing two overlapping maps (2000 on the left, 2010 on the right);
- a side-by-side comparison (two separate maps moving in unison), and
- a single-map overlay (you can fade between 2010 and 2000).

4. Color-coded the population change data in the popup window. Population increase is shown in green; decrease is shown in red. (A minor thing, but hopefully it makes the change values clearer.)

All three options for viewing are included so people can pick and choose which they like best, or which suits their particular needs. The vertical slider bar provides an effective "before and after" view. The side-by-side comparison works well for lingering over a given area, especially at the local level, taking the time to absorb the differences in demographic patterns. The single-map 2010/2000 overlay seems especially helpful for revealing the increase in diversity over a given area (as areas shaded with darker blues, oranges, etc fade to lighter shades indicating a more mixed population demographically) or vice versa.

CUNY Center for Urban Research has received some good feedback already on people's favorite comparison techniques. If you have a preference and have used the maps for a particular project, they would love to know.

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