One of the interesting parts of my position at the Boston Metropolitan Area Planning Council over the past year has been working with U.S. Census Bureau surveys and data. Since last September, this work has included preparations to ensure the region is prepared for the 2010 Census.
Mandated by the U.S. Constitution to determine political representation, every planner knows the U.S. Census has become the single most important data source for studying American cities. The U.S. Census Bureau produces dozens of surveys, the Census held once every ten years is by far the most important. Many of the other surveys, as well as countless private sector studies and projections, depend on the decennial census numbers.