Monday, December 27, 2010

New data by ward, ANC, neighborhood cluster, and more

NeighborhoodInfo DC has updated all their neighborhood profiles with data from the new 2005-09 American Community Survey (ACS).   You can see the latest ACS data for Wards, ANCs, Neighborhood Clusters, Police Service Areas, ZIP codes, and Census tracts.

Some of the data you will find in the updated profiles includes:

  • After decades of decline, the District of Columbia’s population increased between 2000 and 2005-09, with the fastest population growth in Ward 6 (9.7 percent) and Ward 5 (4.2 percent).
  • Overall, the number of children in the city changed little over the past decade, but the child population in Ward 3 grew 42 percent since 2000.
  • The share of persons living in the city who did not have a high school diploma or GED decreased during the past decade, falling from 22 to 15 percent between 2000 and 2005-09.   The largest drops were in Ward 8 (34 to 21 percent) and Ward 1 (31 to 19 percent).

NeighborhoodInfo DC has also updated profile data on TANF and Food Stamp cases, violent crimes, and property crimes.

This news was announced in a December 23 email.   Additional important information in the email follows.

Users of NeighborhoodInfo DC can compare the data in the updated profiles with earlier decennial Census data for 1990 and 2000.   The data are from the first release of ACS 5-year estimates, which combine survey responses from 2005 through 2009.   These indicators are labeled as "2005-09" in the profiles.   The actual value can be thought of as an average over this 5-year period.   Other data highlights are:

  • The majority of families with own children in the District of Columbia continued to be headed by single women, with the highest shares in Ward 7 (77 percent of families with children), Ward 8 (74 percent), and Ward 5 (58 percent) in 2005-09.
  • The District of Columbia became more diverse during the past decade.   Neighborhood cluster 19 (Lamond Riggs, Queens Chapel, Fort Totten, Pleasant Hill) in Ward 4 had the largest increase in the percentage of Latinos since 2000, rising from 2.1 to 8.9 percent of the population.

In addition to accessing individual area profiles, you can download comparison tables that allow easy comparison of data across all areas of a given type of geography (all eight Wards, for instance).

What is the American Community Survey?
The American Community Survey (ACS) is a national survey of households and housing units, administered by the U.S. Census Bureau on an ongoing basis.   The ACS replaces the Decennial Census long form, which was administered only once every ten years, collecting much of the same information on demographics, poverty, employment, housing, and other detailed characteristics.   While the ACS offers the advantage of more frequent data collection, it has a smaller sample size than the long form.   To obtain reliable estimates for small areas, multiple years of ACS data must be combined to produce a single indicator.   For subareas in DC, we must use the ACS 5-year estimates, which combine data for 60 consecutive months of surveys.

More information on the ACS can be found on the Census Bureau's web site.

Which profile indicators have been updated?
The new data update the following indicators for all profiles:
  • Total population and % population change since 2000
  • % children and % change in child population since 2000
  • % foreign born persons
  • Population by race and ethnicity
  • Poverty rate
  • Unemployment rate
  • % persons without a HS diploma
  • % female-headed families with children
  • % households with a phone or a car
  • Average family income and % change in income since 2000
  • Total occupied housing units
  • Rental vacancy rate
  • Homeownership rate

Is this the same as the 2010 Census?
No.   ACS data collection is separate from the Decennial Census.   The population, household, and housing unit counts in the ACS are based on U.S. Census Bureau estimates, not actual census counts.   They will be adding indicators from the 2010 Census to our profiles as those data become available in 2011.

This is great, but what if I need more?
While NeighborhoodInfo DC has tried to include some of the most important indicators, their web profiles only scratch the surface of the rich array of data in the ACS.   Contact them via email with any requests for additional information that you’d like to see from the ACS or other sources.

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