Updated ABS boundaries for 2016

Edit July 2017 – It seems a lot of people are still coming to this page from search engines. If this is you, hi! If you are using Tableau 10.2 or later let me be clear… you no longer need these files nor do you need to use the techniques described to show custom regions. Tableau can now read the ESRI boundary files from the ABS website natively. This gives you a much better experience and makes your workbooks much simpler. Check out the Tableau blog post on this new feature here.

One of the most popular posts on my blog is Australian region boundaries in Tableau. Many people link through it to find the ASGS boundary data files I have converted for use in Tableau. The Australian Bureau of Statistics recently released an update to the ASGS main structure with changes to:

  • Mesh blocks
  • Statistical Area Levels 1 – 4 (SA1 – SA4)
  • Greater Capital City Statistical Areas (GCCSA)

You can read the details about the update here.

I’ve updated the boundary files for these structures and put them in the Dropbox folder, here.

I’ve also generated the boundaries at different resolutions – 10m, 100m and 200m. The finer the resolution, the more data points (e.g. the SA1 file has 781K points @ 200m, 1M points @ 100m, and 2.6M points @ 10m). Use the version that best suits your needs – if you are showing the whole country, use the 200m resolution file; if you are zoomed in on a small area use the 10m resolution file.

080816_0229_UpdatedABSb1.png080816_0229_UpdatedABSb2.png080816_0229_UpdatedABSb3.png

Enjoy!

About Alan Eldridge

Hi. I'm Alan. By day I manage the sales consulting team for Tableau Software in Australia/New Zealand. By night, I'm a caped crusader. Or sleeping. Most often it's sleeping.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

21 Responses to Updated ABS boundaries for 2016

  1. Pingback: Australian region boundaries in Tableau | The Last Data Bender

  2. Susan Day says:

    Thanks Alan! You are definitely a caped crusader

  3. Rose says:

    Hi Alan,

    I was wondering if the old boundary files for SA3 are still available for download? I am working with data in the 2011 format.

    Thanks!

  4. Jerry says:

    Hi Alan,

    Thanks very much for this. That’s really helpful. Is it possible that I can have a 10m resolution version for SSC? I appreciate for your help.

    Thanks

  5. Jerry says:

    Hi Alan,

    This is really great! Can I please also have the SSC file at 10m resolution? I appreciate your help!

    Thanks so much!

  6. Hi Alan, I need to gather data for QLD State Electorates and I was wondering if there are any changes since the Tableau 10 update before I start attempting to create the polygons from the Shape files of the State electorates. Thank you! Sian

    • Hi Sian, there are no changes in the Tableau 10 release that would change the way you approach a problem for state electoral boundaries. You would use custom polygons.

      We are hoping to make this much easier soon – I suggest you register for our TC Live virtual pass (http://tclive.tableau.com/SignUp) and check out the keynote as there will be some interesting announcements there.

      Cheers,
      Alan

  7. Andy says:

    Hi Alan, I am able to use the lGA (200m) file successfully but the LGA(100m) seems to be missing data and can’t be opened. Any chance you could update this file? Thanks. Andy

  8. Matt says:

    Hi Alan,

    This is going to save my bacon! You’re a legend. Could you please tell me which file I would open to map Western Australian suburbs in Tableau?

    Many thanks,

    Matt

  9. Matt Gibbs says:

    Hi Alan,

    I left a comment asking about the suburb data but have now found it. As before, you’re the man! I’ll be following your blog from now on.

    Hope you have an awesome week ahead.

    Matt

  10. Brock Ford says:

    Hi Alan,

    Firstly, thank you very much for this. You have made our analysis a great deal easier and more insightful with this.

    One question though, I am using a time series dataset to map changes over time at the SA3 level.

    For instance, I might have a calculated field which says that if the month of the data is at May’17 then sum price.
    Another field that says if month of data is at May’16, then sum price.
    Then find the difference between them.

    Writing in the month into the calculated field works perfectly. But I update the data monthly, and was hoping for these calculated fields to update dynamically.

    Therefore, I created a field which states:

    SUM(IF MONTH([Date])=MONTH({FIXED:MAX([Date])}) AND
    YEAR([Date])=YEAR({FIXED:MAX([Date])}) THEN [Price] END)

    To calculate the most recent date’s total price. And another field to find the total price last year:

    SUM(IF MONTH([Date])=MONTH({FIXED:MAX([Date])}) AND
    YEAR([Date])=YEAR({FIXED:MAX([Date])})-1 THEN [Price] END)

    This works perfectly when the data is the Primary data source. But needing it at the SA3 level, I have to use your data to map the SA3 levels first, then my data as the secondary data source.

    It comes up with the error message:
    Cannot blend the seoncdary data source because one or more fields use an unsupported aggregation.

    I have researched it for days, and all I can find is articles saying that LOD cals cannot be used in the Secondary Data source.

    Can you think of any way to overcome this?

    Any information would be hugely appreciated it. I am pulling what little hair I have left out at a rapid pace.

    Regards,

    Brock Ford.

    • Hi Brock. Are you running a recent version of Tableau Desktop? If so, you could do a cross-datasource join instead of using blending. Instead of using the TDE vertex list from this post, download the SA3 shapefile from the ABS and join that file with your analytic data using the SA3 ID or name. Approaching the problem this way will remove the difference in LOD between the SA3 boundary data and your analytic data – it will be 1:1 now. Also, you will have a single data source so you can continue to use the LODs you have described above as you are no longer dealing with a blend.

      Hope this suggestion helps.

      Cheers,
      Alan

      • Brock Ford says:

        Hi Alan,
        Thanks heaps for the reply. I did try this approach with the TDE Vertex List, but as you said, it isn’t one to one, and I couldn’t manipulate the data, which is large, to make it work.

        We are currently using 10.1. I did see your comment about the new shapefile this morning. This will honestly save us so much time. I believe our data guys are meeting with Tableau guys next week. I will definitely be pushing to get the update to 10.3.

        When we do upgrade, I will attempt the method you mentioned, buy merging the data.
        If I can’t figure it out, I will get back to you.

        Again, thank you very much.

        You really have added an insightful element that has helped our business a great deal.

        Regards,
        Brock.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s