Official County Census Numbers Out
Block-by-block numbers coming soon
By Lee Nichols,
1:49PM, Fri. Feb. 18, 2011
The U.S. Census Department has released population numbers down to the county level for Texas, and it confirms what previous estimates indicated: Texas' political districts are about to change radically. There was huge growth along the I-35 corridor, rural West Texas depopulated, and Hispanics were the major driver of the overall growth.
The department has made an interactive map available for those wishing to study the details (click through that link, and then click on the map of Texas).
In the next few days, the Texas Legislative Council will release even more detailed data, down to the block and precinct level, and legislators will commence redrawing lines for Congress, the House, the Senate, and the State Board of Education to balance the populations relatively equally among districts. (Click on that TLC link, and you'll find links showing how much current districts deviate from the idea district size. When looking at congressional districts, keep in mind that Texas' congressional delegation will grow from 32 districts to 36.)
What to expect in Travis: Districts possibly shrinking in geographic size, districts from outside Travis possibly creeping into the county. Districts in West Texas will have to cover much larger areas.
For background on political redistricting, see "Painting by Numbers," Jan. 28.