[Talk-us] Strange city boundary: Lee, Illinois

Kevin Kenny kevin.b.kenny at gmail.com
Wed Nov 14 16:34:25 UTC 2018

And another reminder: sparsely populated areas of the US may have
indefinite boundaries simply because nobody ever troubled to survey and
monument them. New York has a few county lines and a good many township
lines like that. They get resolved when and if there's a dispute. The tax
revenue from undeveloped forest lands is so minimal that the municipalities
don't bother as long as both landowners pay their taxes. In these areas,
you cannot assume that there's a definitive reference for the boundary

On Wed, Nov 14, 2018 at 11:26 AM Kevin Kenny <kevin.b.kenny at gmail.com>

> On Wed, Nov 14, 2018 at 11:07 AM Martijn van Exel <m at rtijn.org> wrote:
>> Hmm.
>> I guess https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/United_States_admin_level is
>> really not correct then where it says: "Census Designated Places (CDPs) are
>> boundaries maintained by the Census Bureau for statistical purposes. CDPs
>> should be tagged boundary=census, ideally without an admin_level=* tag.”
>> Almost all Utah admin8 are in fact TIGER CDP boundaries:
>> http://overpass-turbo.eu/s/DFS
>> Also,
>> https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:boundary=administrative#10_admin_level_values_for_specific_countries is
>> incorrect where it states that admin8 are "state municipalities: cities,
>> towns, villages and hamlets (infrequent)”
>> Furthermore,
>> https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/WikiProject_United_States/Boundaries is
>> also incorrect and suggests "Census-designated places (CDPs) are
>> statistical, not administrative areas. Project TIGER fixup deletes outdated
>> CDPs and retags relevant ones from boundary=administrative admin_level=8(or
>> 7) to boundary=census, no admin_level=*.”
>> Finally, there seem to be too many wiki pages covering this :) But that’s
>> not unique for this topic.
> CDP's do follow administrative boundaries for the most part, because many
> states ask the census to respect administrative boundaries (depending on
> census statistics for their own use).  Where stuff is really untrustworthy
> is where the Census Bureau had to invent the lines because a designated
> place was unincorporated.
> That's actually pretty common. New York has a couple of densely populated
> "hamlets" with populations of over 50000 that never voted to adopt a city
> charter and so have no municipal government other than the township. Some
> of them even have official boundaries, generally because they are
> completely surrounded by incorporated communities, but sometimes as part of
> the town's bylaws.
> There are, nevertheless, a number of cases where the Census Bureau goofed.
> The neighbourhood where I grew up is one - for years the Census and the
> Post Office both placed it inside New York City, but it is not. The
> confusion was caused by the fact that the Post Office found it most
> convenient to sort the mail at an office in a neighbouring community that
> is in New York City, so the neighbourhood had a New York City ZIP code
> despite being in adjoining Nassau County. Residents found themselves in
> court, often, for failure to pay the New York City income tax that they did
> not owe, and so on. The city line is more or less correct in OSM, by the
> way, and I *think* that the Census Bureau had redrawn the CDP by the time
> TIGER was created.
> (Lesson: ZIP codes do not designate administrative regions. In fact, they
> do not necessarily designate contiguous geographic regions, or in fact, any
> geography at all. They are nothing more nor less than sets of mailboxes
> that the Post Office finds it convenient to sort together.)
> Also, TIGER. Enough said about TIGER.  Please clean the cat box any time
> that you get a chance.
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.openstreetmap.org/pipermail/talk-us/attachments/20181114/2517557c/attachment.html>

More information about the Talk-us mailing list