Census Workers Marking GPS Coordinates of U.S. Homes

By Bob Livingston • Jun 19th, 2009



The United States Constitution calls for an enumeration (census) to be taken every 10 years to determine the number of representatives each state will send to Congress. The next one is set to begin on April 1, 2010.

But census workers are already on the streets of America, and they’re doing more than just seeking the number of people in each household. They’re tasked with marking the Global Positioning System (GPS) coordinates of every house in America.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau website, “This GPS technology allows us to reduce the amount of time spent by census workers in locating addresses while increasing productivity. Most importantly, by adding a GPS coordinate to each housing unit, the Census Bureau is able to ensure that residents are counted in the right location. This is important as the data are used to apportion congressional representation and used to draw redistricting lines.