Skyscraper City Forum banner
1 - 20 of 42 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Recently, UMKC did a study of the Kansas City area that has lasted a couple years. They finally released the results, which has suprised many and brought up plenty of skeptics.

http://www.bloch.umkc.edu/bloch-news-facts/news-details/index.aspx?nid=84

The study found that apparently Kansas City's actual population is 533,117. This is vastly different than the Census estimates for 2006, which cites a population of about 430,000. A decrease of 1.9% from the 2000 Census.

Wayne Cauthen, the City Manager of Kansas City, MO stated he will be looking to challenging the Census Estimates with this new information/study.

If correct, then this new information will put Kansas City at the highest population since 1970. And in fact, will be the highest number of people ever to live in Kansas City, MO.

This increase could also help lower an already declining crime rate in Kansas City.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,066 Posts
Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Why waste time and energy challenging Census estimates when there are all sorts of more important and productive things that smart, energetic people in town could be working on? Such as making sure everyone gets counted in the 2010 Census, for example.

Social Compact has been touting the exact same types of increases in places like Cincinnati. It is a model derived estimate from people who are pushing a program. In Cincy they claimed some neighborhoods had been undercounted by 40% or so. If that's true, then it should be easy to go out and physically find some of the bodies, but no one actually seems interested in doing that.

No doubt the Census estimates aren't perfect, but I don't see the value in challenging them.

By the way, what was the 2000 Census population of KC versus the most recent estimate published prior to that? It would be an interesting figure to know.
 

·
SoCal Hal
Joined
·
1,157 Posts
This seems to happen in a bunch of cities across the country. Not challenging the U.S. Census Bureau, but them actually not estimating population correctly.

When will they learn?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well this could be correct, to a degree. I've been keeping track of our building permits each year, and seeing Kansas City growth since 2000, I believe Kansas City is definitely past the 500,000 person mark, but I doubt it's that far past it.
I think this is a lot more correct than the census estimates, which have always been way off.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
6,471 Posts
Census estimates are used in the allocation of funds for some government programs. Cities don't just challenge Census estimates for their own sake; the numbers actually do mean something, so this idea that cities "have something better to do" is short-sighted.

Yes, the Census has been terrible at estimating. For the first time, ever, Detroit successfully challenged the Census and got their count boosted by nearly 50,000 people. Milwaukee got back over 30,000, etc...And NYC, Cincy, DC, St. Louis, etc...regularly challenge their estimate numbers to a respectable effect.

Good for KC. I hope they go for the challenge. We're talking millions of dollars out there that don't get used for what they are supposed to be used for, or diverted to other cities. This isn't some asinine pissing contest.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
If we are successful, and if the study is accurate and the Census agrees with it, it would push us past Tucson, and put us right under Portland and Oklahoma City in terms of population and potential funding.

And I'm sure it would be a great marketing tool as well as more opportunities for funding. Especially stating that it is the highest our population has ever been, and promoting the revival of our urban area.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,066 Posts
You'll also note it is mostly struggling and stagnated cities that are challenging Census estimates. Every bit of time, energy, money, etc. put into challenging a Census estimate is something that could have gone to some other productive activity. The fact that cities do it shows that the opportunity cost of doing it there is low. They must be out of real ideas about building the future of their town. You don't see high growth cities doing this. They've got bigger things to worry about. I would have put KC in the higher growth tier for the Midwest, so it is disappointing to see it importing ideas from Detroit.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,066 Posts
If we are successful, and if the study is accurate and the Census agrees with it, it would push us past Tucson, and put us right under Portland and Oklahoma City in terms of population and potential funding.
If KC was legitimately underestimated, why wouldn't OKC, Tuscon, and Portland be equally as underestimated?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I could see OKC being underestimated, I don't know much about Tucson, and Portland, well EVERYONE knows it is doing good, so I wouldn't think the Census would do a horrible job estimating, but who knows?

I'm not saying if they challenged the Census they would raise in population, I'm sure they would. However, in all likelihood, they won't challenge it...

Funding is based on estimates, not 8 year old Census numbers. That is why it's so critical to challenge the estimates if your city has actually grown. The Census has shown that we've lost people, yet we've been gaining people, and if the study is correct, we have gained A LOT of people.
 

·
The Jive is Alive.
Joined
·
1,537 Posts
I'm all for challenging census figures when necessary, but there isn't a chance in hell that over 100,000 people went unaccounted for in Kansas City. Usually census challenges turn up a couple thousand people. 100,000 is just ludicrous, and I truly think it's a ridiculous stretch.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,582 Posts
Here in Milwaukee we recently challenged the estimates and the numbers came back about 30,000 higher which showed growth in the city instead of decline. So for the most part it was a feel good moment but also I'm sure it is important for corporate re-locations to see a growing city instead of one in decline. Additionally as others mentioned it is correlated with the amount of federal dollars you receive. So is that important in the grand scheme of things maybe not but it does have value.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
JiveCitySTL, it isn't 100,000 people... It's 70,000. And Kansas City is over 500,000 guaranteed, but I doubt it's as high as 530,000...

Also, you are forgetting that the estimates don't account for illegals, homeless, overcrowded homes, or illegally modified homes (those built to be more than one unit illegally)... The miscount is more in the urban area than the suburbs. Heck, their estimates for Kansas City say that our Downtown area has continued to lose people, yet it went from below 10,000 to over 17,000 since 2000.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
435 Posts
I agree that the time and effort put into challenging census figures of almost any city would be better expended in other ways.

Kansas City needs to continue working on attracting more residents to the city and increasing its population density. KC is one of the largest U.S. cities geographically, and therefore has a great potential for population growth by simply becoming more dense.
But the KC metro area is a classic example of urban sprawl. It currently contains four suburbs with over 100,000 persons each. Imagine how much more dense the city would be if half the people who moved to Overland Park and Olathe had decided to live in KC proper.

In 1940, the city had about 400,000 residents and more than 6600 persons per square mile. That's a fairly dense population of an urban core.
In 1970, the city's population had increased to about 507,000 people, mostly by annexation of vast tracts of surrounding land. The city then covered 316 square miles-- more than five times its size in 1940-- but had a population density of only about 1600 persons per square mile.
In 2006, the city had 447,000 residents in 318 square miles, which is a density of about 1400 per square mile. It remains one of the least densely-populated US cities of 100,000 or more.

There are still portions of KC-- especially in Platte County north of the Missouri River-- that remain largely non-urban in nature (farmland and other undeveloped land).
There is plenty room within the city's boundaries for much more growth; at least three times the current population could fit comfortably within KC.
Get this: If the city's population were 1.5 million, its density would still be below that of other Midwest cities, such as Chicago and St Louis.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
6,471 Posts
I'm not sure I get your point. Is this just the post of a St. Louis resident ragging on KC?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Actually we don't have 318 square miles today, it's at 313.5... Not much of a difference, but it's a decrease from the 1970s.
 

·
Paradise Island
Joined
·
3,743 Posts
I've always seen challenging mid-decade census estimates as a sign of civic insecurity. The numbers are almost certainly wrong for cities like Minneapolis as well but nobody here cares. If I am not mistaken it is the actual census that determines how funds are disbursed and such, not the estimates.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Of course we are insecure, it's Kansas City... Residents have become generally pessimistic about the city. (which is a 180 from their attitude 100 years ago)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
679 Posts
why do people think this is a waste of time? a lot of federal funding is based on population (and congressional districts) and if the gov't is using the wrong number in their estimates, you are getting screwed. like said before, milwaukee gained 30,000 to put it over 600,000 for the first time in a long time. definitely worth it, why shouldn't a city have an accurate count?
 

·
Paradise Island
Joined
·
3,743 Posts
why do people think this is a waste of time? a lot of federal funding is based on population (and congressional districts) and if the gov't is using the wrong number in their estimates, you are getting screwed. like said before, milwaukee gained 30,000 to put it over 600,000 for the first time in a long time. definitely worth it, why shouldn't a city have an accurate count?
I'm pretty sure the government doesn't use the estimates for those purposes though. I was under the impression that they only use the numbers from the actual census which is taken every ten years.

Does anyone know if this is the case?
 
1 - 20 of 42 Posts
Top