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Commuting flows to Albany

Commuting flows to Colonie

Commuting flows to Saratoga Springs

Commuting flows to Schenectady

Commuting flows to Troy

National commuting flows to the Capital Region core

This map is a bit different -- it highlights which counties around the country were estimated to have people commuting to one of the Capital Region's four core counties. Unlike the maps above, we didn't draw the 50-commuter cut-off for this list. And as a result, some of the counties that show up have estimates with margins of error (sometimes greatly) larger than the estimate. Really, we just sort of put this map together to get a rough, smudgy sense of how widely the Capital Region core draws people.

Where the commuters are from

albany commting inflows map clip

The city of Albany draws commuters from a wide area.

Each weekday in the Capital Region a large tide of people wash into the area's urban centers for their work days, and then stream back home. So large is this tide for the city of Albany that its daytime population during the week rises by 2/3.

So, where do all these people come from? Well, thanks to some recently released Census data, we can some sense of an answer to that question. And to extend the water metaphor a bit further, we can map out the "commuter sheds" that drain into each of the Capital Region's urban centers each weekday.

So let's have a look.

Commuting flow maps

This post is basically a handful of interactive maps -- they're above in large form, click or scroll all the way up.

A few important things about these numbers

+ These numbers are from the 2009-2013 5-Year American Community Survey estimates released earlier this month by the Census Bureau. The estimates were drawn from a survey of workers 16 years and older during one week. (So, if a person was working somewhere other than the place they usually work during that week, they got counted for the unusual place rather than their typical place.)

+ Of course, with any sort of estimate, there's a margin of error -- in some cases involving small groups of people the margin is relatively large.

+ We've mapped out the commuting flows for the city of Albany, the town of Colonie, the city of Saratoga Springs, the city of Schenectady, and the city of Troy. We selected that group because its members have by far the largest in-flows of weekday commuters. (Ballston Spa is also up there, but it doesn't show up in this particular set of numbers because it's neither a city nor town.)

+ When looking at places from which commuters traveled for the maps, we drew a cut-off line at 50 commuters. That's more or less an arbitrary number, but it seemed to often mark the point at which the margins of error for number of commuters from a place started to exceed the estimated number of people commuting from that place. As a result, some places that very certainly send commuters into the Capital Region's centers aren't highlighted on the map. (One example: The city of Hudson, which had an estimated 32 commuters to Albany -- with a margin of error of 31.)

+ Your mileage will vary.

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