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.



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.
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18 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.


  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.


  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.


  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,


  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.


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