Stats NZ has a new website.

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As we transition to our new site, you'll still find some Stats NZ information here on this archive site.

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Examples of geographic boundary layers

Here are two examples of geographic boundary files, which are electronic files of geographic boundaries (in digitised form) used in mapping and geographic information systems (GIS).

Text files of the geographic relationships between meshblocks and higher geographies are also available in annual Geographic area files. More information is also available through the Geographic hierarchy page.

2018 territorial authorities

The image below shows the territorial authorities as at 2018. Territorial authorities are defined at meshblock level and represent district and city councils boundaries. When defining the boundaries of territorial authorities in 1989, the Local Government Commission placed considerable weight on the 'community of interest'. While the size of the community was a factor, the relevance of the components of the community to each other, and the capacity of the unit to service the community in an efficient manner, were the factors on which the commission placed most emphasis.

Example of statistical area 1s (SA1s) and statistical area 2s (SA2s)

The image below represents SA1s and SA2s within the Rolleston urban area. 

Statistical area 1s (SA1s) are aggregations of meshblocks (Stats NZ's smallest geographic unit for which statistical data is collected) and have an ideal population size of 100–200 residents.

Statistical area 2s (SA2s) are aggregations of SA1s. They are non-administrative areas that are in between SA1s and territorial authorities in size. SA2s must either define or aggregate to define regional councils and territorial authorities.

Urban areas are included in the Urban rural classification. Urban areas are aggregations of SA2s and contain an estimated resident population of more than 1,000 people and have a high population density.

The image below uses colours to differentiate SA2s within the Rolleston urban area. SA1s are overlayed on top of the SA2s and are indicated by a grey boundary. 

Published 7 December 2017

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