As part of the development of the long-range Metropolitan Transportation Plan, MRMPO staff produce a socioeconomic estimate for a base year (2016) and a socioeconomic forecast for a horizon year (2040). These datasets include population, housing, and employment by sector for various geographic areas including the region, counties, and small areas called Data Analysis Subzones (DASZ).
The forecasting process begins with a high-level regional forecast (Bernalillo, Sandoval, Torrance, Valencia, and Southern Santa Fe Counties) for population and employment which is then allocated to small level DASZ forecast.
The regional projection for population is based on county-level population projections developed by the University of New Mexico’s Geospatial Population Studies (GPS) in 2016. The regional employment projection was developed by MRCOG using a combination of sources including University of New Mexico’s Bureau of Business and Economic Research (BBER) and a locally customized Regional Economic Model (REMI).
The DASZ level forecast is developed with the assistance of a land use simulation modelling system (UrbanSim) that is estimated and calibrated specifically for the MRCOG region. Inputs include existing population (census and ESRI), employment (Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages and InfoGroup), land use inventories, recent building permits, development review cases, local plans (including sector plans, area plans, master plans, etc.), local zoning regulation (including allowable uses and densities), vacancy rates, development costs, building square footage, undevelopable lands, and information collected through developer and planner interviews.