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Thread: Population estimate techniques

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Budgie's avatar
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    Population estimate techniques

    I'm sure this thread is somewhere in the archive, but I'd like to take a fresh look at this topic.

    Does your jurisdiction produce annual population estimates?

    If so, what methods/techniques do you use.

    I'm probably going to use building and demolition permit data along with water account data to estimate population with holding household size consistent with the 2000 census.
    "And all this terrible change had come about because he had ceased to believe himself and had taken to believing others. " - Leo Tolstoy

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Plus
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    I had started a thread about the Census Estimates:
    http://www.cyburbia.org/forums/showt...ghlight=census
    Oddball
    Why don't you knock it off with them negative waves?
    Why don't you dig how beautiful it is out here?
    Why don't you say something righteous and hopeful for a change?
    From Kelly's Heroes (1970)


    Are you sure you're not hurt ?
    No. Just some parts wake up faster than others.
    Broke parts take a little longer, though.
    From Electric Horseman (1979)

  3. #3
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Budgie View post
    I'm sure this thread is somewhere in the archive, but I'd like to take a fresh look at this topic.

    Does your jurisdiction produce annual population estimates?

    If so, what methods/techniques do you use.

    I'm probably going to use building and demolition permit data along with water account data to estimate population with holding household size consistent with the 2000 census.
    We use building/demo with HH size as our primary estimation, and then adjust for vacancy rates (survey of multifamily vacancy rates and utility information for single-family). We have an adjusted lower HH size for multifamily. This city has used the technique for a long time and it has proven pretty accurate.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Budgie's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Suburb Repairman View post
    We use building/demo with HH size as our primary estimation, and then adjust for vacancy rates (survey of multifamily vacancy rates and utility information for single-family). We have an adjusted lower HH size for multifamily. This city has used the technique for a long time and it has proven pretty accurate.
    In Abilene, Texas we used to count mobile homes in the MH parks. I was thinking the same thing on vacancy rates. We have so few multi-family housing that it would almost be as easy for me to get a head count.
    "And all this terrible change had come about because he had ceased to believe himself and had taken to believing others. " - Leo Tolstoy

  5. #5
    Cyburbian chasqui's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Suburb Repairman View post
    We use building/demo with HH size as our primary estimation, and then adjust for vacancy rates (survey of multifamily vacancy rates and utility information for single-family). We have an adjusted lower HH size for multifamily. This city has used the technique for a long time and it has proven pretty accurate.
    When I did this (quarterly) I used the same method (permits/demos, HH size & vacancy rates). Although we did not have a local vacancy-rate survey, the COG had regional vacancy data for SF and MF households. I recall back when we received the Census 2000 full population count, we were pleased to see the figures lined up very well. One thing I recommend is trying to go back and collect all the older population figures you can get. Once you start consistently publishing population estimates, you will get the following question:
    What was the population in 1983?

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Budgie's avatar
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    I should also account for annexations.
    "And all this terrible change had come about because he had ceased to believe himself and had taken to believing others. " - Leo Tolstoy

  7. #7
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Budgie View post
    I should also account for annexations.
    Sorry I forgot... we do that too, along with on-campus student population each Fall. Luckily, we usually annex before property develops, which makes estimating easy.

    In response to jread... we've backtracked to 1985 using this method. Before that our recordkeeping gets pretty sketchy.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  8. #8
    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    Our COG provides municipal level forecasts monthly as a normal service. You can get the info right off of the Internet.


    This link provides some FAQ's on population forecasts.

    http://www.semcog.org/Data/Populatio...ates/index.htm

    One of the more disturbing trends is that while Detroit leads the region by far in new housing permits, it has still lost nine percent of its population!!
    We hope for better things; it will arise from the ashes - Fr Gabriel Richard 1805

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Emeritus Bear Up North's avatar
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    Thank you, DetroitPlanner, for providing the SEMCOG link.

    Interesting to note that Monroe County, located in the far southeastern corner of the state of Michigan, has an estimated 6-year growth of about 10,000.....and about one-third of that growth is actually just a few miles from downtown Toledo, OH. As I have mentioned in other threads, Metro Toledo's spread (not real growth, such rearrangement of household locations) has made Bedford Township, at nearly 32,000, Toledo's largest suburb. (And part of the Detroit metro numbers.)

    Bear
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  10. #10
    I'd like help on my city's population estimate, which it seems is way off when it comes to the US Census Bureau.

    2000 numbers:
    441,545 people
    202,334 housing units
    183,981 occupied units
    Average household size: 2.35 people
    Average family size: 3.06

    2006 stats:
    14,588 housing permits issued since 2000
    3,780 of those were completed in DT since 2000
    8,536 of those were Single Family Units

    Would you be able to accurately predict it's current population, or is more information required?

    By my method, I came up with a population of about 470,000. Far different from the 444,000 estimated by the Census Bureau. (which their estimates for our city are apparently based on 2000 information, which took place before the housing boom)

  11. #11
    Cyburbian Plus
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    Related Article from USA TODAY:

    HEADLINE - Further into decade, more challenge Census estimates
    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/...s-counts_x.htm

    HIGHLIGHTS:
    The government bases a city's population estimate partly on the number of building permits for new housing units. It also estimates the number that are torn down. The estimate of lost units often is based on the age and type of the housing, says Gregory Harper, a Census demographer.

    Revising population estimates means more than government money for others, especially old industrial cities that have lost people for 50 years. It's about image, status and attracting jobs and people.
    Oddball
    Why don't you knock it off with them negative waves?
    Why don't you dig how beautiful it is out here?
    Why don't you say something righteous and hopeful for a change?
    From Kelly's Heroes (1970)


    Are you sure you're not hurt ?
    No. Just some parts wake up faster than others.
    Broke parts take a little longer, though.
    From Electric Horseman (1979)

  12. #12
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by HeartlandCityBoy View post
    I'd like help on my city's population estimate, which it seems is way off when it comes to the US Census Bureau.

    2000 numbers:
    441,545 people
    202,334 housing units
    183,981 occupied units
    Average household size: 2.35 people
    Average family size: 3.06

    2006 stats:
    14,588 housing permits issued since 2000
    3,780 of those were completed in DT since 2000
    8,536 of those were Single Family Units

    Would you be able to accurately predict it's current population, or is more information required?

    By my method, I came up with a population of about 470,000. Far different from the 444,000 estimated by the Census Bureau. (which their estimates for our city are apparently based on 2000 information, which took place before the housing boom)
    6.4% over six years in a midwest city by your calculations... seems reasonable. Are all of those new housing starts or are some of them remodels, etc.? I'd be curious to see whether your number of vacant units has increased over that time period--that may indicate whether those building permits are "real growth" or if you are just rearranging the existing population.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  13. #13
    I'm sure about any other stats, because the only real information our city comes out with is those permits.

    I know that over 3,000 new units were completed in our Downtown alone, which caused it to go from about 10,000 people to 16,100 from 2000-early 2006.
    I also know that since 2000, the north side of our city has changed a whole lot. A lot more developments have occured, adding hundreds, if not thousands of new houses. There also has been a lot of remodeling and reconstruction on buildings/houses.

    Experts in our own area said if our growth continues to 2050, we could have a population of 700,000 people, however growth of course, never occurs over such a large period of time.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    How many demos Heartland? You need to figure those in your estimate too.



    Quote Originally posted by Bear Up North View post
    Thank you, DetroitPlanner, for providing the SEMCOG link.

    Interesting to note that Monroe County, located in the far southeastern corner of the state of Michigan, has an estimated 6-year growth of about 10,000.....and about one-third of that growth is actually just a few miles from downtown Toledo, OH. As I have mentioned in other threads, Metro Toledo's spread (not real growth, such rearrangement of household locations) has made Bedford Township, at nearly 32,000, Toledo's largest suburb. (And part of the Detroit metro numbers.)

    Bear
    The lower three townships of Monroe County are members of both SEMCOG and TMACOG. SEMCOG serves as its MPO, but there is much coordination between the two agencies and the staff of Monroe County. Toledo is easily the fastest growing part of Monroe County, but there are still many links to other SEMCOG Cities such as Detroit, Ann Arbor, and Romulus (Region's biggest airport, no offense to Swanton). Bear, check out the maps/digital photography layers of the SEMCOG database. Its really cool.
    We hope for better things; it will arise from the ashes - Fr Gabriel Richard 1805

  15. #15
    Which city group would know that? The planning dept? The housing dept?

  16. #16
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by HeartlandCityBoy View post
    Which city group would know that? The planning dept? The housing dept?
    Whatever department does building permits will likely track demolition permits as well. As for vacancy rates, your local Board of Realtors, apartment association, etc. likely has some industry publications. You can also cross reference addresses with water connections and water use (very low use probably = vacant).

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  17. #17
    Umm, I cannot do extensive work, it's a city of over 400,000 people.

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