I'm looking through some ACS data on # of households by block group in Santa Clara County. Block Group 2, Census Tract 5002, Santa Clara County, California has 0 households, despite having a population estimate of 737. This is true for the five-year estimates from 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016.

I thought Census block groups had a population requirement (except for bodies of water, which would be block group 0)?

Any advice or explanation would be appreciated.

  • 1
    What is ACS data? You're talking to a world wide audience here (so your question needs a US tag too).
    – user4293
    Jul 28, 2018 at 8:48
  • This helps you in no way whatsoever, but I'm guessing you're talking about ACS_2014_5YR_BG.gdb.zip (but you should point to a URL source), and I ran into a similar issue when writing github.com/barrycarter/bcapps/blob/master/QUORA/bc-us-split.pl -- there are quite a few blockgroups with 0 people. I realize your case is slightly different (blockgroups with people but no households), but thought I'd mention this.
    – user3856
    Jul 28, 2018 at 17:55

1 Answer 1


Block groups are generally divided by roads and administrative boundaries. Based on the reality of their delineation, they are not divided by population explicitly.

What you have here is a block group that includes the Santa Clara County Jail and the Santa Clara Juvenile Hall. They are considered a part of the group quarters population.

The household living situation of your block group.

A google maps link for the area.

You can also contact the ACS Data Users Group.

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