Tag Archives: ZIP Code

Accessing & Using ZIP Code Demographics

.. tip of the day .. a continuing weekly or more frequent tip on developing, integrating, accessing and using geographic, demographic, economic and statistical data. Join in .. tip of the day posts are added to the Data Analytics Blog on an irregular basis, normally weekly. Follow the blog to receive updates as they occur.

… February 2017 updates .. 5 ways to access/analyze the most recent estimates of median housing value and other subject matter by ZIP Code area .. updates on accessing/downloading/using American Community Survey (ACS1115) 5-year estimates. See more detail in related Web section.

Site analysis (Option 5 below)
– create site analysis profiles from a location/ZIP code.

Contents
Five data access and use options, listed in the links below, are reviewed. Each method illustrates how ZIP code demographic-economic data can be accessed/ analyzed/used in different contexts. The most basic data access/data download is illustrated in Option 3. The following links open new windows that take you to the related section with more detail.
Option 1 – View the data as a thematic pattern map.
Option 2 – View, compare, rank query data in interactive tables.
Option 3 – Access data using API Tools; create datasets.
.. Option 3a – Extended ZIP Code subject matter access.
.. Option 3b – ZIP code urban/rural data access.
.. Option 3c – Additional API ACS data access resources.
Option 4 – View $MHI in structured profile in context of related data.
Option 5 – Site analysis – view circular area profile from a location.

Related ZIP Code Data Access & Use sections
Interactive access to demographics based on an address
Summary of ZIP Code Data Resources & Tools
10 Reasons to use Census Tracts Versus ZIP Codes
Analyzing Census Tract Demographics by ZIP Code Area
ZIP Code to Census Tract Equivalence Table
ZIP Code Urban/Rural Geography & Demographics
Mapping ZIP Code Demograhics
Housing Price Index by 5-digit ZIP Code – time series; annual updates
Housing Price Index by 3-digit ZIP Code – time series; quarterly updates
ZIP Code Business Establishment, Employment & Earnings by industry
ZIP Code Retail Trade Establishment & Sales by industry
ZIP Code Equivalence Tables — ZIP Code to School District

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.

ZIP Codes with Highest & Lowest Economic Prosperity

.. the latest data for ZIP Code Areas show that eleven had a median household income of $250,000 or more during the period 2011-15. More than 20 ZIP code areas had a median housing value of $2,000,000 or more. Contrast these ZIP code areas with higher economic prosperity with the more than 150 ZIP codes that had a median housing value of less than $30,000.  Use the interactive table in this related Web section to see which ZIPs meet these and other criteria.

ZIP Codes with MHI $100,000 or More; Dallas, TX Metro
Analyzing economic prosperity patterns using combined types of small area geography … the following graphic shows ZIP code areas a red markers with the median household income or $100,000 or more in context of median household income by census tract thematic pattern. Click graphic for larger view with more detail. Expand browser window for best quality view. Use CV XE GIS software and associated GIS project to develop variations of this view for your areas of interest. .

– view developed with CV XE GIS software.

This section reviews measures of economic prosperity for all ZIP code areas. These data were released in December 2016. This section updates with new data December 2017. See the list of all ZIP ccdes showing population, housing and economic characteristics in the interactive table shown below. Use the interactive table to view, rank, compare and query ZIP code attributes.

Examining demographic-economic characteristics by ZIP code is important for several reasons. We are familiar with our own ZIP codes as a geographic location. We tend to be interested in our area compared to other areas. ZIP codes provide an easy way to do that. Also, many secondary data resources are tabulated by ZIP code area; some important data are only available by ZIP code. See more about ZIP Code areas.

Resources & Methods to Examine Small Area Demographics
• See related ZIP Code Demographic-Economic Interactive Tables
  .. extended subject matter
• See related Census Tract Code Demographic-Economic Interactive Tables
• Examine ZIP Code Urban/Rural Characteristics
• Examine ZIP Code Business Establishment patterns
• Examine ZIP Code Housing Price Index patterns
• Join us in the weekly Data Analytics Lab Sessions
  .. reviewing applications using these and related data.

ZIP Code Areas with $MHI $100,000 or More
The following graphic shows ZIP code areas as red markers having median household income or $100,000 or more. Click graphic for larger view with more detail. Expand browser window for best quality view. Use CV XE GIS software and associated GIS project to develop variations of this view; integrate other data; select alternative ACS 2015 subject matter.

– view developed with CV XE GIS software. Click graphic for larger view.

ZIP Code Areas with $MHV Less than $30,000
The following graphic shows ZIP code areas as orange markers having median housing value of less than $30,000. Click graphic for larger view with more detail. Expand browser window for best quality view. Use CV XE GIS software and associated GIS project to develop variations of this view; integrate other data; select alternative ACS 2015 subject matter.

– view developed with CV XE GIS software. Click graphic for larger view.

ZIP Code Areas: Population & Economic Prosperity
  — Interactive Table –
Use the interactive table to view, rank, compare, query ZIP codes based on a selection of demographic-economic measures. The following graphic illustrates how the table can be used to examine patterns of the three digit ZIP code area (San Diego) by 5-digit ZIP code. Table operations are used to select ZIP codes in the 921 3-digit area (containing 39 5-digit ZIP codes). These 39 ZIP code are then ranked in descending order on median household income. See results in the table shown below. ZIP code 92145 has the highest $MHI in this group with $228.036.

– click graphic for larger view.

Try it yourself. Use the table to examine a set of ZIP codes on your selected criteria in for a state/area of interest.

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.

ZIP Code Demographic-Economic Characteristics

.. demographic-economic characteristics of ZIP code areas (ZCAs) are popular for many reasons. Businesses use ZCAs to examine sales patterns and market and sales territories and for planning and analysis; many client/sales related data may only be available by ZIP code. Analysts seek to knit together these business data with broader demographic-economic characteristics of the area/market — as reviewed here. Where are areas of missed opportunity relative to the size of the market? How is one or a group of ZIP code areas changing, and why? How might change impact you? This section provides an illustrative ZIP code area demographic-economic profile and reviews how you can create similar profiles, and datasets for linking your data and further analysis, for any ZCA.

ZIP code 77019, located in the Houston area, is used for illustration. The demographic-economic data/analyses reviewed here were generated using the ProximityOne Outlook2020 software. See that Web section for details about sources, scope and uses of data. Outlook2020 can be used to create these profiles and data extracts for any ZIP code area and many other types of geography.

ZIP Code 77019 in Context of Houston Area
ZIP code 77019 is shown at pointer.

… view created using CV XE GIS.

ZIP Code 77019 Patterns of Economic Prosperity
ZIP code 77019 is shown with bold black boundary. The thematic pattern map shows median household income by census tract.

… view created using CV XE GIS.

Using Outlook2020
Outlook2020 can be used to create a profile for ZCA 77019 (or any ZCA) as well as intersecting census tracts (shown in above view). The two following graphics present a partial view of the ZCA 77019 demographic-economic profile. It is easy to see columns of estimates for two years and their change. The basic profile includes approximately 170 demographic-economic characteristics.

Profile in XLS Structure

Profile in HTML Structure

ZCA 77019 Full HTML Demographic-Economic Profile
See the full profile in this related Web section.

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.

School Location Analysis

Goto ProximityOne  Location-location-location … this section illustrates use of GIS tools to develop custom maps showing location of points of interest, based on addresses, in context of other geography and patterns. Anyone with Internet access and a Windows-based computer can develop location analyses shown in this section for locations of interest anywhere in the U.S.

Starting at the end of this post, the objective is to display/examine the address in the context of related geography as shown in the graphic below.  The location, address, is shown by the red marker in context with street (and mini-profile of the street segment) and associated census block (red boundary, yellow census block code). The Koko Head Elementary School  address (189 Lunalilo Home Road, Honolulu, HI 96825) is used in this example. It could be any school in the U.S. or any address, school or otherwise. The view and details are reviewed in more detail below.
hanaumabaykoko

Examining Location/School in Context of Neighborhood
While there are many Web-based resources to obtain a map view of the location based on the address, and/or attributes of the school based on name, resources reviewed here provide a more flexible and comprehensive way to examine a location/school in context of the neighborhood and surrounding area demographics.  This process requires the types of resources reviewed here.

Study Area
The study area is in the vicinity of Hanauma Bay located west of Waikiki Beach in Honolulu, HI. The steps illustrated here can be similarly applied to anywhere in the U.S.
hanaumabayarea

The next graphic shows a zoom-in view of the study area.  The coastline edge is shown with a line-shapefile that depicts perennial water features.
hanaumabayarea1osm

Geocoding: Assign Latitude-Longitude & Census Block Code
The address is entering into the CV XE GIS Find Address tool input box:
findaddress1
Clicking OK, a point shapefile is automatically created and added to the active GIS project. The next graphic shows the address location as a red marker.  The Identify tool is used to show the results of the geocoding.  Clicking on the marker displays the mini-profile.  The census block code is 150030001141014 or 15-003-000114-1014.  The address is located in FIPS state code 15, FIPS county code 003, Census 2010 census tract code 000114, and Census 2010 census block code 1014.  For other potential geo-referencing purposes, and as shown in the mini-profile, the latitude-longitude values are also retained in the shapefile dbf record.
findaddress2

A zoom-in view shows the study area in more detail. Roads are shown as black lines; census blocks are shown with red boundaries.
hanaumabayarea1

Zoom-in Detail; Location in Context
The view shown below shows the location (red marker) in context of street location and in context of associated census blocks.  Census blocks are shown with red boundaries and show yellow census block codes as labels.  The school is located within census block 1014.  Selected attributes of the street segment are shown in the profile.  The left- and right-side from address and to address ranges are shown as well as the left-side and right-side ZIP code.  These left- and right-side attributes are available for any intersection-to-intersection street segment in the U.S.
hanaumabaykoko

Economic Prosperity by Neighborhood
The next graphic shows patterns of economic prosperity in the broader area.  Koko Head ES is shown by the red marker (see pointer).  The color-coded areas show patterns of median household income (MHI) based on block group geography.  Intervals and color codes are shown in legend at left of map.  Labels show the MHI by block group.  The gray area has population of 39; MHI estimate is not available.  The MHI estimates are based on 2011 ACS 5-year data.  A more comprehensive analysis could select from approximately 250 subject matter items by block group (view available items).
hanaumabay_bg

Resources and Using the Tools
A GIS project was developed using the CV XE GIS software (no cost, details below.   The GIS project is comprised of two public domain shapefiles: the TIGER/Line 2013 edges/roads and the TIGER/Line 2013 census blocks.  The address point location was determined by entering the address into the CV XE Tools>Find Address feature.  The Find Address feature determines the latitude-longitude and census block code for the location.  A point shapefile is dynamically created.  The project is then saved for subsequent re-opening and use.

The GIS project and tools used to develop views shown in this section are available to ProximityOne User Group members. Join now, no fee. Members may download the GIS project and dynamically create related view.  This application can serve as an example to develop similar applications for locations of interest.

Related Sections
Schools and School Districts Main Page.
Hawaii Demographics.

Next Steps
An upcoming post will delve deeper into using these smaller area geodemographics to develop and analyze neighborhood patterns and trends.  Join us in the upcoming December 17, 2013 one hour web session where we talk about using the ACS 2012 5-year demographics for small area analysis.  Those new data are scheduled to be released that day.

10 Reasons to Avoid ZIP Code GeoDemographics

Possibly the most obvious reason to use ZIP codes for small area demographic and economic analysis is that the analyst has ZIP Code-based data. Typically those data are addresses or address-based data.  The analyst seeks to assign demographic and economic data to the ZIP code records/locations so that more can be known about the demographic-economic characteristics of individual addresses or address vicinity.

ZIP Codes are well known to all of us. They are used by the U.S. Postal Service as a means to more efficiently deliver mail.  Census tracts may be less familiar. Census tracts are defined by the Census Bureau and organized as sub-county building blocks.  More about census tracts.

This sample profile shows side-by-side comparison demographic-economic views of two census tracts and associated ZIP Code Tabulation Area in the Scottsdale, AZ area.  See related section about equivalencing census tract and ZIP Code area geography.

10 Reasons to use Census Tracts Versus ZIP Code Geography & Demographics

1. Census tracts are polygons and cover a well-defined geographic area.
ZIP codes are clusters of lines; the U.S. Postal Service does not define ZIP Code boundaries.  A very large number of 5-digit ZIP Codes are P.O. boxes or specific street addresses and thus represent points not even one line.
2. Census tracts provide more granularity (73,000 areas) than ZIP Codes (43,000).
3. Census tracts are, generally, non-changing static geography from decennial census to census.  ZIP codes may change at any time; new ZIP codes may be created or eliminated at any time.
4. Census tracts cover the U.S. wall to wall.  ZIP codes exist only where U.S. mail service is provided.
5. Census tracts align coterminously to county boundaries.  ZIP codes do not.
6. Census tracts have well known/exact boundaries.  ZIP codes are groups of lines whose exact structural definition is not officially established.
7.  Census tracts provide more statistical uniformity averaging 4,000+ population.  The population of a single ZIP code can exceed 100,000.
8.  Census tracts have a large and richer set of associated, more reliable demographic-economic data. True ZIP Code data are only delivery statistics developed by the U.S. Postal Service.
9.  The total land area and water area are known for each census tract, to the square meter.  The total area covered by a ZIP Code is not known, let alone water area.
10. A unique set of census blocks, and hence demographics, can be associated with each census tract.  There is no good way to associate census blocks with ZIP codes.
11.. Who’s counting? It is entirely feasible to develop and analyze time series data for census tracts.  Time series data by ZIP code is risky due to the inherent potential for changing geographic scope.

So why do we keep using estimated ZIP Code areas and demographics? In the main, ZIP codes provide an easier and more comfortable way to associate or characterize demographic-economic conditions.  We all know our own ZIP code and generally quite a few others.  Few among us know what our census tract code is, let alone for other locations.