Tag Archives: geocoding

Using GIS & GeoDemographics

.. join us in the GIS & GeoDemographics self-paced, online course.

Visual representation, maps, of demographic data by geographic area can be exciting and rewarding. Using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) can bring maps alive. Creativity is boundless. The banner at the top of the corresponding Web section presents a static view of a map rendered using GIS. This map shows the Los Angeles area by census tract. For the analyst or stakeholder, it shows something more — the percent Asian citizen voting age population by tract, overlayed with Congressional District boundaries and codes. It shows relationships, patterns. Using the power of GIS, the zoom level, colors, legend, and labeling can all be changed immediately. You, the GIS user, are at once analyst, artist and storyteller. In control of your medium, canvas, you further your benefits from use these software and data by making dynamic presentations in collaborations. Make compelling arguments. Capture your views and blend them with words and charts into documents. Welcome to the world of GIS and geodemographics.

Mapping census block demographics
The graphic shown below illustrates use of GIS software with the TIGER digital map database census block shapefile to show census blocks for two Ohio counties in context of 2018 CBSAs/Metros. Clicking on a census block (see pointer) shows a mini profile for that block.


– view developed using ProximityOne CV XE GIS and related GIS project.

Using GIS & GeoDemographics .. about the course
Examining geographic-demographic-economic characteristics, patterns and trends … researchers, policymakers, journalists, administrators, students among others. How can you most benefit from using the TIGER geographic data to meet your objectives? These data are available at no cost. Join us in the Using GIS Tools & GeoDemographics online, self-paced course. Learn all aspects of using the Census Bureau TIGER files and related Census-sourced and other Federal statistical data. Augment your professional skills; participants receive all required data, methods and tools. Your personal session is developed and coordinated by Warren Glimpse. You receive the GIS course certificate upon completion. The course may be started at any time and includes requisite Windows-based CV XE GIS software. The course assumes the participant has basic familiarity with a Windows computer, Internet and spreadsheet operations. No GIS related experience is required. Experienced GIS professionals also benefit by learning about the use and nuances of Census-sourced data and integrating these with other data. The structure includes four segments that typically require 2.5 hours each. It is feasible to complete the course in a day or two though we suggest two weeks.

Use Geographic Information Systems (GIS) with TIGER … integrate/analyze data from American Community Survey (ACS) or the decennial census (Census 2010) (Census 2020) into TIGER files to make thematic maps. Merge data from other statistical programs. Geocode your address-based data and add the geocoded data to a GIS project/map view; examine patterns. View your market/service areas and assess competitive position, unmet opportunities. Learn about procedures and strategies to develop GIS projects that meet your needs. Acquire the tools and data to perform these tasks without spending more — provided as a part of our course.

The course is not just about TIGER and demographic-economic data. It provides a well-rounded framework for how to use GIS. While TIGER is a focus, we review procedures to access and use thousands of public use shapefiles and GIS files that may be useful to you. It provides a well-rounded framework for how to use GIS.

Enroll today …
Click the enrollment button/link (opens new page) to enroll now ($395). We will contact you and provide next step information.   Questions? Call us at (800)364-7656.

Data Analytics Web Sessions
Join me in a Demographics Analytics Lab session to discuss more details about accessing and using wide-ranging demographic-economic data and data analytics. Learn more about using these data for areas and applications of interest.

About the Author
— Warren Glimpse is former senior Census Bureau statistician responsible for innovative data access and use operations. He is also the former associate director of the U.S. Office of Federal Statistical Policy and Standards for data access and use. He has more than 20 years of experience in the private sector developing data resources and tools for integration and analysis of geographic, demographic, economic and business data. Contact Warren. Join Warren on LinkedIn.

Creating & Using Location Shapefiles

.. GIS tools and methods to develop and update location shapefiles .. location shapefiles are essential to most GIS applications. Location shapefiles, or point shapefiles, enable viewing/analyzing locations on a map and attributes of these locations such store or customer ID, street address, city, date updated, value, ZIP code and wide-ranging attributes about the location. This section reviews tools and methods to develop and use location shapefiles. See more detail about topics covered in this section in the related Web page.

Viewing/Analyzing Store Locations in the Dallas, TX Area
The following graphic illustrates how store locations can be shown in context of other geography and associated demographic-economic attributes. This view shows store locations (red markers) in context of Dallas city (blue cross-hatch pattern) and broader metro area. Markers shown in this view are based on a location shapefile created using steps described below. The identify tool is used to click on a location and show attributes in a mini-profile.

.. view developed with ProximityOne CV XE GIS and related GIS project.

View the locations contextually with thematic patterns by tract or other geography. Combine views of store, customer, agent, competitor and other location shapefiles.
The following view shows patterns of median household income by census tract.

.. view developed with ProximityOne CV XE GIS and related GIS project.

Development of location shapefiles often starts with a list of addresses. Locations are not always address-oriented; they might be geographically dispersed measurement or transaction locations — having no address assigned. In applications reviewed here, locations are organized as rows in a CSV file. Each CSV file contains like-structured attributes for each location. The example used in this section uses store locations located in the Dallas, TX area.

There are two basic methods used to create location shapefiles: 1) geocoding address-data contained in the source data file or 2) using the latitude-longitude of the location included in the source data file record. The focus here is on option 2 — using the latitude-longitude of the location already present in the source data file.

Creating a Location Shapefile
The process of creating a location shapefile uses the CV XE GIS Manage Location Shapefile feature. With CV running, the process is started with File>Tools>ManageLocationShapefile. The following form appears.

.. ManageLocationShapefile feature/operation in ProximityOne CV XE GIS.

CV XE GIS provides other ways to create location shapefiles:
• Tools>AddShapes>Points — click points on the map window canvas.
• Tools>FindAddress — creates a single point shapefile based on specified address.
• Tools>FindAddress (Batch) — creates a point shapefile based on specified file of address records.
See details in User Guide.

Steps to Create a Location Shapefile
The process of creating the shapefile “C:\cvxe\1\locations1pts.shp” can be viewed by clicking the Run button on the form (with CV running). Two input CSV structured files are required:
• data definition file
• source data file

There are two sets of illustration location input files included with the CV installer:
• locations1_dd.csv and locations1.csv (7 locations in Johnson County, KS)
• locations2_dd.csv and locations2.csv (252 locations in Dallas and Houston)
These files are located in the \1 (typically c:\cvxe\1) folder. The marker/location shapefile used in the map shown above was created using the lcoations2 input files.

Data Definition File
The Data Definition (DD) file is an ASCII/text file structured as a CSV file. It may created with any text editor. The DD file is specific to the source data file. But in the case of recurring source data files for different periods the same DD file might apply to many source data files. There are several rules and guidelines for development of the DD file:
• there is one line/record for each field in the source data file.
• each line/record must be structured in an exact form:
.. each line/record is comprised of exactly 4 elements separated by a comma:
.. 1 field name for subject matter item
– must consist of 1 to 10 characters and include no blanks or special characters
.. 2 field type: C for character, N for numeric
.. 3 field length: an integer specifying the maximum with of the field
.. 4 maximum number of decimals for field (value is 0 for character fields)
The DD File must include three final fields:
LATITUDE,n,12,6
LONGITUDE,n,12,6
GEOID,c,15,0
The structure of these three DD file records must be as shown above. The source data file, described below, must have the LATITUDE and LONGITUDE fields populated with accurate values. The GEOID field may populated with either an accurate value of placeholder value like 0.

Example. Data for each store for the default DD file name “C:\cvxe\1\locations1_dd.csv” include the following fields/attributes:
  NAME,C,45,0
STORE,c,15,0
ADDRESS,c,60,0
CITY,c,40,0
LATITUDE,n,12,6
LONGITUDE,n,12,6
GEOID,c,15,0

Optionally create a DD File using the Create DD File button on the form. Clicking this button will create a DD File containing attributes of the dBase file specified in the associated edit box. The DD File name is created from the dBase file name. If the dBase file name is “c:\cvxe\1\locations1pts.dbf”, the DD File will be named “c:\cvxe\1\locations1pts_dd.csv”.

About the GEOID
The GEOID is a 15 character code which defines the Census 2010 census block containing each location. The GEOID is generally assigned by the ManageLocationShapefile operation and is one of the important and distinctive features of this tool. The GEOID is used to uniquely determine, with the GIS application, any of the following: state, county, census tract, block group, or census block.

The GEOID, as used in this section, is the 15 character Census 2010 geocode for the census block. The GEOID value 481130002011012 (see in location profile in map at top of section) is structured as:
state FIPS code: 48 (2 chars)
county FIPS code: 113 (3 chars)
census tract code 000201 (6 chars)
census block code: 1012 (4 chars) (block group code: 1 — first of 4 characters)

About the Source Data File
The Source Data File is an ASCII/text file structured as a CSV file. It is typically developed by exporting/saving an Excel or dBase file in CSV structure. There are several rules and guidelines for development of the source data file:
• fields must be structured and arranged as defined in the DD File.
• character fields must not contain embedded commas.
• final items in record sequence must be:
.. LATITUDE – must have accurate decimal degree value; 6 digit precision suggested.
.. LONGITUDE- must have accurate decimal degree value; 6 digit precision suggested.
.. GEOID – this may be 0, not assigned or the accurately assigned GEOID value.
– optionally create/rewrite the GEOID used in the new shapefile.

Updates; Combining Vintages of Location Attributes
Location based data might update frequently, even daily. The recommended method to add, update and extend the scope of location-based data is to create new address shapefiles corresponding to different vintages or dates covered. The structure of the files must be the same so that they files can be used together or separately. Suppose there is one set of data covering year to date and a second set of data covering the following month. The ManagePointShapefile operation would be run once for each time period. Two shapefiles would be created. These shapefiles may be added to a GIS project and used separately or in combination to view/analyze patterns.

Join me in a Data Analytics Lab session to discuss more details about accessing and using wide-ranging demographic-economic data and data analytics. Learn more about using these data for areas and applications of interest.

About the Author
— Warren Glimpse is former senior Census Bureau statistician responsible for innovative data access and use operations. He is also the former associate director of the U.S. Office of Federal Statistical Policy and Standards for data access and use. He has more than 20 years of experience in the private sector developing data resources and tools for integration and analysis of geographic, demographic, economic and business data. Contact Warren. Join Warren on LinkedIn.

Crime Data Analytics

Goto ProximityOne .. examining crime incidence and socioeconomic patterns and analyzing small-area and location-based data.

.. what are the crime patterns in neighborhoods or areas of interest? It is challenging to get useful answers to this type of question. Crime incidence data by location/address are often difficult or not possible to obtain. Even where the location-based crime data are available, the data must be geocoded, e.g., assigned a census block code to each address. Separately demographic-economic must be organized to examine contextually with the crime data.

Integrating Crimes by Location & Patterns of Economic Prosperity
– View developed using CV XE GIS and related GIS project.

Crime Data Analytics. Use the Crime Incidence and Socioeconomic Patterns GIS project and associated datasets to explore relationships between crime and small area demographic-economic characteristics. Follow the steps described below to study patterns and relationships in Kansas City and/or use this framework to develop similar data analytics for other areas.

Framework for a case study. 409 of Missouri’s 4,506 block groups are within the jurisdiction of the Kansas City police department (KCPD) and had one or more crimes in 2014 (latest fully reported year). There were approximately 10,400 crimes recorded by the KCPD in 2014, in the city area spanning four counties. In this section tools and data are used to examine crime patterns in Kansas City, MO. Crime data are included as markers/locations in a GIS project. Crime data are also aggregated to the census block level and examined as summary data (aggregate crimes by census block). Crime data are related to American Community Survey (ACS) 2014 5-year demographic-economic data at the block group geographic level.

To perform these types of analyses, it is important to start with location-based crime data that have been attributed with type of offense (offense code). Ideally, each crime incidence data record includes minimally the offense code and address of the crime. Such location-based crime incidence data have been acquired from the KCPD. These data are used to develop a shapefile that can be included in a GIS project.

Patterns of Crime Incidence in Kansas City, MO
The following graphic shows patterns of crime incidence by census block for the “Plaza Area” within Kansas city. This view shows all types of crimes aggregated to the census block level. Crimes committed where a handgun was involved are shown as black/red circular markers. Click the graphic for a larger view that shows legend and more detail.
– View developed using CV XE GIS and related GIS project.

Related views (click link to view graphic in new window):
Use the GIS project to develop variations of these views. Optionally add your own data.
Lay of the land: Kansas City city (cross hatched) in context of metro
All crimes as markers in Kansas City in 2014

Patterns of Economic Prosperity & Crime Incidence
The following graphic shows patterns of economic prosperity (median household income $MHI) by block group for the same general area as above. This view illustrates how two types of crimes (burglary blue triangle markers and homicide (red/black square markers) can be examined in context. Click the graphic for a larger view that shows legend and more detail.

– View developed using CV XE GIS and related GIS project.

Related views (click link to view graphic in new window):
Use the GIS project to develop variations of these views.
View similar to above, without $MHI layer

Data used to analyze patterns of economic prosperity/$MHI are based on the American Community Survey (ACS) 2014 5-year estimates at the block group geographic level. The same scope of subject matter is available for higher level geography. The GIS project/datasets includes many types of demographic-economic subject matter that can be used to display/analyze different socioeconomic patterns.

Using Block Group Geography/Data
Census Block Groups sit in a “mid-range” geography between census blocks and census tracts. All cover the U.S. wall-to-wall and nest together, census blocks being the lowest common denominator for each. Block Groups (BGs) are the smallest geographic area for which annually updated ACS 5-year estimates data are tabulated.

Advantages of using BG geodemographics include the maximum degree of geographic drill-down (using ACS data) … enabling the most micro-perspective of demographics for a neighborhood or part of study area. A disadvantages of using BG estimates is that typically the smaller area estimates have a relatively higher error of estimate.

Crime Incidence and Socioeconomic Patterns GIS Project/Datasets
1. Install the ProximityOne CV XE GIS
… omit this step if CV XE GIS software already installed.
… run the CV XE GIS installer
… take all defaults during installation
2. Download the CISP GIS Project fileset
… requires ProximityOne User Group ID (join now)
… unzip CISP GIS project files to local folder c:\crime
3. Open the kcmo_crimes_2014.gis project
… after completing the above steps, click File>Open>Dialog
… open the file named C:\crime\kcmo_crimes_2014.gis
4. Done .. the start-up view shows the crime patterns.

Weekly Data Analytics Lab Sessions
Join me in a Data Analytics Lab session to discuss more details about accessing location-based data and block group demographics and integrating those data into analytical applications.  Learn more about integrating these data with other geography, your data and use of data analytics that apply to your situation.

About the Author
— Warren Glimpse is former senior Census Bureau statistician responsible for innovative data access and use operations. He is also the former associate director of the U.S. Office of Federal Statistical Policy and Standards for data access and use. He has more than 20 years of experience in the private sector developing data resources and tools for integration and analysis of geographic, demographic, economic and business data. Contact Warren. Join Warren on LinkedIn.

Interactive Location-Based Demographics Tool

.. have you wondered how Web sites determine the demographic-economic attributes for a location/address? Are those data for the corresponding block group, census tract, city or something else? Was it the “ZIP code area”? These areas can be 100,000 population or more making them so large that alternative geographies might be preferred. Often those important particulars — which geography and data sourcing — are vague or unknown. This section reviews use of the interactive Location-Based Demographics Tool to access data for a location based multiple, alternative types of address “container areas”. See more details in this related web section.

Any given address or location is contained with several types of statistical areas (e.g. census tract or block group) and political areas (e.g. city or county). We may want to know the demographic-economic characteristics of a location for any one or several of these geographies. Use the interactive tool on this page to access those data. For example, access/view the median household income of the location/address block group or the median household income the location/address city. Key in the address of interest, select the type of geography and click Find — see graphic below. The results are displayed on the same page.

Click this graphic to view address entry form

Profile for Census Tract
When Tract is selected as Type of Area, this profile is displayed:
(median household income is $118,827)

Profile for Block Group
When Block Group is selected as Type of Area, this profile is displayed:
(median household income is $139,342)

Creating Maps for These Geographies
See this related web section about using the MapCompiler to create map views for these block group and census tract areas in the vicinity of the default address used above (1 Infinite Loop, Cupertino, CA). Use the CV XE MapCompiler (GeoGateway feature) to create similar maps for any area of interest.

About the Author
— Warren Glimpse is former senior Census Bureau statistician responsible for innovative data access and use operations. He is also the former associate director of the U.S. Office of Federal Statistical Policy and Standards for data access and use. He has more than 20 years of experience in the private sector developing data resources and tools for integration and analysis of geographic, demographic, economic and business data.

Creating & Using Address Shapefiles

… there are many online tools that enable you to key in an address and show the location on a map. This section is focused on creating and using address-based point shapefiles in a GIS context. These methods provide similar information, showing the addresses on a map, but also enable a wide range of analytical capabilities. For example, find out how many of your addresses are in one county or census tract. Or, determine the census block or school district for each address.

Visualize Address Locations

The above views illustrates use of Find Address tool, described below, to locate/show addresses listed below. Marker/locations are shown with different markers based on a query. Markers are labeled with the point ID.
1100 Main St, Kansas City, MO 64105
1301 Wyandotte St, Kansas City, MO 64105
1701 W. 39th Street, Kansas City, MO 64111
4101 Main Street, Kansas City, MO 64111
302 Nichols Rd., Kansas City, MO 64112
6100 Broadmoor St, Mission, KS 66202
5800 Antioch Rd, Merriam, KS 66202
11815 E Highway 40, Independence, MO 64055

Use the no-fee ProximityOne User Group version of the CV XE GIS software to enter addresses, show them on a map and automatically save the shapefile for reuse in the existing or other GIS projects.

Entering Addresses
Install CV XE GIS software and enter your User Group userid. Start CV XE GIS and select the Tools>Find Address feature.

After clicking Tools>Find Address, prompt appears showing default address. Enter an address or use the default value; click OK. Optionally continue adding addresses.  End the process by entering null address (no value). The first step is illustrated in the following graphic using an address in the Kansas City, MO area.

Shapefile Automatically Created
The default point shapefile name c:\cvxe\1\$$address1.shp is created as shown in message in the graphic below. In this example, only one address was entered. The address location is shown by the red marker. The shapefile is added to the existing GIS project. See legend panel top left in the graphic.

Using the Results
The next graphic illustrates using the Identify tool to click on point which displays the mini-profile for the selected point/address. Address/point attributes that are automatically created include the point number and address in ‘name’ field. Use other features of the software to modify the marker/point appearance, label the addresses or add other attributes to each address.

Unlike online address-locators and display services, using the GIS operation you can determine which in which census block or other political/statistical areas (congressional district, school district, etc.) the address is located. If your point shapefile contains many addresses there are also geospatial analysis tools that can be used. Use the site analysis feature select a group of addresses, visually on the map, and create/display a profile of aggregated data for the selection of points.

Contextual View of Matched Road/Street Segment
You can also view the address locations in context of the matched street segment. The next graphic shows a zoom-in view. The roads/streets layer has made active (click on layer name in legend panel). The Identify tool is used to create mini-profile of matched street segment as shown in the graphic below.

By using the road segment attributes, the census block code (and higher level geocodes) can be determined/assigned. See more about the road segment attributes.

There are many other tools to create address-based point shapefiles. For example, you might have a file with existing latitude-longitude values/fields. In this case, the Find Address or Find Address-Batch operation is not needed — the latitude-longitude values have already been assigned. Creating a point shapefile by importing records with existing latitude-longitude will be reviewed in an upcoming blog post.

About the Author
— Warren Glimpse is former senior Census Bureau statistician responsible for innovative data access and use operations. He is also the former associate director of the U.S. Office of Federal Statistical Policy and Standards for data access and use. He has more than 20 years of experience in the private sector developing data resources and tools for integration and analysis of geographic, demographic, economic and business data.