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Regional Census Data

U.S. Census data are valued and unique resources. Professionals and volunteers from planning and associated fields frequently request demographic, social, housing, and economic data. This page will feature new data or new products of regional importance from various US Census Bureau programs. Community members can use the data to update their understanding of municipal characteristics. Data can show how places are changing, and can serve as the basis for adjusting or developing policies and programs to improve the community.

County-to-County Migration Flows Tables

The U.S. Census Bureau sent a press release on County-to-County Migration Flows Tables on February 6, 2014. Migration and geographic mobility refer to movement of residents from one location to another. Along with migration flows, the newly released data also estimate the number and direction of movers  by

  • Educational Attainment, (five levels between Less than high school graduate to Graduate of professional degree
  • Personal (Individual) Income – seven categories from Less than $9,999 of less to $75,000 or more
  • Household Income - Seven categories from Less than $10,000 to $150,000 or more.

The data source is the 2011 American Community Survey (ACS) 5-year 2007-2011 estimates.

Getting the Data

The Census Flows Mapper makes data available using a windows-based program. A slideshow tutorial provides step-by–step instructions for getting the data. (A link to the tutorial is located in the "Release Information" box in the upper right corner of the press release). Using the Flows Mapper example for the CMAP region, we looked for the estimated net flow of residents in Kane County with graduate or professional degrees. We took the steps noted below.

  1. Navigate to Census Bureau County-to-County Migration Flows website.
  2. Select Census Flows Mapper.
  3. Launch Flows Mapper
  4. Search for county:  enter Kane County, IL,
  5. Choose dataset 2007-2011
  6. Choose a migration flow: Net
  7. Choose characteristic:  graduate or professional degrees, View the map. Zoom in or out.
  8. Immediately above the U.S. map, select View Data Table. Results show net migration from Kane County to Cook County of 123 persons
  9. Change migration Flow to Outbound then Enter. Results show 183 persons left Kane County for Cook County.
  10. Change migration Flow to Inbound then Enter. Results show 306 persons moved from Cook County to Kane County. Net change is 306 – 183 = 123
  11. Data may be exported to Excel spreadsheet.
  12. Export to Excel

More analyses could be conducted for all seven counties in the region across all educational levels. Results would show the magnitude of change, (counties with the most or least outbound, inbound or net movers), or whether movers tended to have less or more education. Analyses by household or individual income levels could indicate whether movers tended to be more or less affluent and what destinations were most attractive.

Bicycling and Walking to Work

The "Bike Commuter Challenge," also more commonly known in Chicago as "Bike to Work Week," was held June 13-20, 2014. During this event, promoted by Active Transportation Alliance, public agencies and private firms encouraged their workers to make a special effort to ride bicycles to work instead of using motorized transportation. In keeping with the spirit of the event, CMAP analyzed the most recent American Community Survey (ACS) data about persons who use non-motorized transportation, (bicycles and walking) to get to work. Comparisons are made between Metropolitan Areas and between the seven counties, (Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will counties) within the CMAP Region.

Metropolitan Area Comparisons
CMAP used the 2012 ACS 5-year estimates to compare the Top 10 metropolitan areas as shown in the table below. The Chicago Metropolitan Area ranks

  • 3rd in number of persons bicycling to work, after New York and Los Angeles
  • 4th, (tied with Washington DC), for percent of persons bicycling to work (0.4%)
  • 3rd for the number of persons walking to work, after New York and Los Angeles
  • 4th, (tied again with Washington DC) for percent of persons walking to work (2.6%).

Top 10 Metropolitan Areas by Total Workers

Comparisons within the 7-County CMAP Region
CMAP also analyzed 2012 ACS estimates for each of the seven counties in the region and for 7-County CMAP Region as a whole. Data showed the following results.

  • Counties with higher populations generally show higher percentages of regional totals for using bicycles and walking to work. Cook County carries the lion's share of the regional totals for all means of transportation, including 80% of workers bicycling and walking to work.
  • Workers in DuPage and Lake Counties take up 13% of the region's combined bicycling and walking workers. The remaining 7% of workers biking or walking to work are split among the remaining four counties (Kane, Kendall, McHenry and Will counties).

Seven Counties in the CMAP Region Ranked by Total Workers

National Report
The U.S. Census Bureau Report recently published "Modes Less Traveled – Bicycling and Walking to Work in the United States: 2008-2012". The report focuses on differences between motorized and non-motorized commutes by workers age 16 years and older. (Note workers are distinct from the total population). The 2012 ACS 5-year estimates were used for the analyses. Examples of the analyses include

  • National trends in non-motorized commuting
  • Biking/walking rates by size of city
  • Biking/Walking rates across census data characteristics including social (age, sex, race and ethnicity), economic (household income), educational attainment and presence of children

The report acknowledges that comparatively few persons bicycle or walk to work. Nevertheless, these means of transportation to work are important components within local transportation systems that offer viable alternatives to driving or taking public transportation. They may also be one link in a trip chain using other means of transportation between home and work. The fact that biking and walking to work are valid transportation options encourages strategies to accommodate them. Improving sidewalk design or building bicycle lanes come to mind. The report also shows how participation in modes of transportation has changed over time through the table titled "Rates of Walking and Bicycling to Work for the Nation's 50 Largest Cities, Census 2000 and American Community Survey 2008-2012".

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