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Abstract or Description

I was inspired by the USDA’s interactive food atlas map that was created with data from the U.S. Economic Research Service. The food desert data was collected by the USDA for a study analyzing the existence of food deserts in relation to socioeconomic factors such as poverty, ethnicity and age. The USDA defines a food desert as a low-income census tract where a substantial number or share of residents has low-access to a supermarket or grocery store. For my Atlas of Maine project, I manually identified the census tracts defined as food deserts in the state of Maine.

Source Data Note

In ArcGIS I used a binary coding system (0 or 1) to categorize census tracts that were non-food desert or food desert. This map was projected using UTM zone 19N and NAD83. The source data comes from the Maine office of GIS and the USDA Economic Research Service. The counties layer and cities layer came from the Maine Office of GIS. The census tract data was obtained from the U.S. Census Bureau. The food desert data, which came from the USDA’s Economic Research Service, was aggregated at the census tract level.

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