I was able to rename the file after extracting from the Zip file. Also, not sure about
FoxPro, but for Access you need to make sure that WinZip adds a CR/LF at the end of each
row. You can find the setting for this under the Misc. tab in Configuration.
Planning Information Manager
Cambridge Community Development Dept.
Cambridge, MA. 02139
617/349-4656 FAX 617/349-4669 TTY 617/349-4621
email => ccook(a)cambridgema.gov
web site => <http://www.cambridgema.gov/~CDD/>
From: ctpp-news-bounces(a)chrispy.net [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On Behalf Of
Sent: Tuesday, March 22, 2011 4:49 PM
Subject: RE: [CTPP] RE: how to use Census Redistricting Summary Files in Access
We just got Michigan today, and I'm really confused.
I downloaded the files from the web site, and I think I understand the 3 different files
OK. If I could get them into FoxPro (which I use instead of Access) I'd be fine
getting them merged.
My problem is that WinZip (version 15.0) won't allow me to rename the .pl to .txt.
Tells me that it's a read only file. I can't do anything with mi2010geo.pl --
can't read it in any software.
Help! (And why does the bureau do this to us???)
At 05:44 PM 3/21/2011, you wrote:
I had a similar problem.
When you rename the files make sure that you can see the pl extension, otherwise Windows
will name it scgeo2010.csv.pl. Access also seems to prefer .txt to .csv.
From: ctpp-news-bounces(a)chrispy.net on behalf of Harun Rashid
Sent: Mon 3/21/2011 3:33 PM
Subject: [CTPP] RE: how to use Census Redistricting Summary Files in Access
In following Mara Kaminowitz's work steps, I'm stuck with instructions in the
Census document - '0FILE_STRUCTURE'. I am referring to page 2, instructions under
'For Access Users' -
a. using Access 2007 in Windows XP
b. Step 3 of Part 1 says 'Unzip the PL files you wish to load into Access and rename
the file extension to csv' - after extracting with WinZip, I simply renamed these
files to add .csv at end. File types remain 'PL file', as shown in Windows
c. Instructions in Part 2 seem to prepared for 2003 versions. When I try to follow similar
steps in 2007, the files renamed in previous step are not recognized
Any help will be appreciated.
Harun Rashid, AICP
Senior GIS Planner
BCD Council of Governments
1362 McMillan Avenue, Suite 100
North Charleston, SC 29405
From: ctpp-news-bounces(a)chrispy.net [ mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of
Sent: Friday, February 18, 2011 10:02 AM
Subject: ctpp-news Digest, Vol 84, Issue 24
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1. How to use the Census Redistricting Summary File in Access
2. Re: How to use the Census Redistricting Summary File in
Access (Ed Christopher)
3. Re: 2010 Population Data Release (Ed Christopher)
4. Re: 2010 Population Data Release (wendell cox)
Date: Fri, 18 Feb 2011 09:06:31 -0500
From: "Mara Kaminowitz" <mkaminowitz(a)baltometro.org>
Subject: [CTPP] How to use the Census Redistricting Summary File in
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
Since I have seen a lot questions about this I thought I would post my
personal notes. If your state hasn't come out yet I strongly suggest
downloading a different state and practicing. Once you get the method down,
it will be easy to repeat.
These instructions are for Access 2003 but I think they are similar for
You will need the following documents. Download them to your computer and
keep them close at all times.
0FILE_STRUCTURE.pdf found at
0GEOID_Construction_for_Matching.pdf found at
pl94-171_tech_doc.pdf found at
1. Go to
download the access document that matches your MS Access version, either
PL2010_Access.accdb or PL2010_Access2003.mdb.
2. In the same directory, go to the folder your state is in and download
everything in the folder.
3. Unzip the files.
4. Open the PDF called 0FILE_STRUCTURE.pdf. Read the first page, it has
useful information. The go to the section marked "For Access Users" on page
2. FOLLOW THESE INSTRUCTIONS EXACTLY.
5. After the tables are imported into Access, you should have the two data
tables and the geography table automatically joined by the LOGRECNO field.
From here, you can use queries to extract tables on a
single geography and
on the topics of your choice. Start a new query in design view.
starting all queries by adding the entire geography table until you get a
feel for which fields you don't need.
6. SUMLEV is the field that will let you extract a particular geography,
such as tracts or counties. You can find a full listing of SUMLEVs under
Chapter 4 of pl94-171_tech_doc.pdf. So if you want a table that has all the
census tracts in your state, type "140" under the Criteria field of the
SUMLEV column in your query design.
7. The other two tables list your data fields. The table names are given in
the back of 0FILE_STRUCTURE.pdf.
8. Export the query to the format of your choice - Excel, dbf, txt, ect.
Note that only the newest Excel program will handle more than 65,000
9. If you are using the data in GIS, you will need to construct a GEOID
field to match the one in the shapefile. The file
0GEOID_Construction_for_Matching.pdf provides formulas for doing this.
Concatenate the fields found in the geography half of your exported table
into a GEOID field.
10. Analyze! Analyze! Analyze!
TIP: Compare the number of records in your shapefile with the numbers of
records in your exported table to make sure the table was extracted
Hopefully these steps make things less confusing, not more. Good luck!
Baltimore Metropolitan Council
Offices at McHenry Row
1500 Whetstone Way
Baltimore, MD 21230
410-732-0500 ext. 1030
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