The Australian Statistical Geography Standard for Census - ABS Structures
ABS structures are defined by the ABS and remain stable between Censuses.
Disaggregated Census data is available for all ABS regions from Statistical Area Level 1 and above.
Mesh Blocks are the basic building block of the new Australian Statistical Geography Standard for Census. There are 347,627 mesh block regions with variable population sizes. There are also Mesh Block representing Migratory, Offshore, Shipping and No Usual Address, these do not appear in the Mesh Block digital boundaries.
Mesh Blocks are intended as building blocks so only limited data will be available, Census population and dwelling counts.
Main Statistical Area Structure
The main Statistical Area Structure is based on the functional area of major cities and towns and gazetted suburbs and localities.
Mesh Blocks build up to Statistical Area Level 1 (SA1s), which is the smallest unit for release of detailed Census data to be output for the 2011 Census.
The average population of a SA1 is around 400 people, with populations in the 200 to 800 range. There are 54,805 SA1s separated into rural and urban geographies.
SA1s build up to Statistical Areas Level 2 (SA2s). There are 2,214 SA2s with populations in the range 3,000 to 25,000.
SA2s build up to Statistical Areas Level 3 (SA3s). There are 351 SA3s with populations in the range 30,000 to 130,000.
SA3s build up to Statistical Areas Level 4 (SA4s). There are 106 SA4s with populations in the range 100,000 to 500,000.
SA4s build up to States and Territories. There are 9 in total for Australia, including ‘Other Territories’.
Remoteness Areas are built up from SA1s and divide Australia into major cities, inner regional, outer regional, remote and very remote areas, based on relative access to services.
Section of State and Urban Centre and Localities Structure
The Section of State and Urban Centres/Localities structure is built up from SA1s. This structure defines the built up areas of Australia's cities and towns. SA1s build up to Urban Centres and Localities. There are approximately 1,800 urban centres and localities.
Urban centres and localities build up to Section of State Ranges with approximately 90 regions.
Section of State Ranges build up to Section of State. These Section of State regions are major urban, other urban, bounded locality and rural balance.
The Indigenous Structure is designed for the presentation of statistics on the Indigenous population.
SA1s build up to Indigenous Locations, with approximately 850 Indigenous Locations. Discrete Indigenous Communities are identified at this level.
Indigenous locations build up to Indigenous Areas, with approximately 540 Indigenous Areas.
Indigenous Areas build up to Indigenous Regions, with approximately 45 Indigenous Regions.
Greater Capital City Statistical Areas
The Greater Capital City Statistical Areas defines the wider economic area of each of the state and territory capitals. There are 34 Greater Capital City Statistical Areas with variable populations sizes and are built from SA4s.
Significant Urban Areas
Significant Urban areas represent towns and cities with a population over 10,000 and contains their likely growth over the next 15 years. There are approximately 125 regions, built from SA2s.
The Australian Statistical Geography Standard for Census - Non-ABS Structures
Non-ABS structures are structures that are not defined by the ABS. They are updated manually. Disaggregated Census data is available for all non-ABS Regions.
Statistical Local Areas
Statistical Local Areas are not part of the ASGS. However, they are supported for the 2011 Census to assist with transition to the ASGC to the ASGS. There are approximately 1,400 regions. They are comprised of whole Mesh Blocks.
Local Government Areas
Local Government Areas (LGAs) are approximated with whole Mesh Blocks. There are approximately 560 regions. Address 1 and 5 years ago data will be available at SA2s and LGAs. Place of Work data will be available for SA2s and LGAs.
SA1s build up to 2,600 Postal Areas. Postal Areas are postcodes approximated with whole SA1s.
SA1s build up to 8,500 State Suburbs. State Suburbs are gazetted suburbs and localities approximated with whole SA1s.
Commonwealth Electoral Divisions
SA1s build up to 150 Commonwealth Electoral Divisions. Commonwealth Electoral Divisions are approximated with whole SA1s.
State Electoral Divisions
SA1s build up to 440 State Electoral Divisions. State Electoral Divisions are approximated with whole SA1s.
Australian Drainage Divisions
SA1s build up to 12 Australian Drainage Divisions. Australian Drainage Divisions are approximated with whole SA1s.
Natural Resource Management Regions
SA1s build up to 56 Natural Resource Management Regions. Natural Resource Management Regions are approximated with whole SA1s.