There was an interesting article in the New York Times today about neighborhoods in New York that typically get under-counted in the Census. These include areas with high immigrant populations as well as places that have had new construction since the last census, as the buildings haven’t been added to the Census Bureau’s master address file.
What the article didn’t mention is that CUNY’s Center for Urban Research has created a great online ap called the Census 2010 Hard to Count mapping site. The site is built on the Census Bureauâ€™s Tract Level Planning Database, which identified twelve population and housing variables, such as language isolation, recent movers, poverty, and crowded housing, that were associated with low mail response in the 2000 Census. This tool was designed to help Census reps, local government officials, and community activists identify traditionally under-counted areas to insure a more complete count this time around.
The database is national in scope, and you can easily map tracts for a particular state, county, city, metro area, or tribal area, and you can search for an area using an individual address. The map is built on a Google Maps interface, and zooming in will change the units mapped from larger units (states, counties, etc) to tracts. You can easily select one of the twelve variables color-coded in the menu to the left of the map, or a Hard to Count index of all the variables.