The following are the most requested general reference maps created by OSI:
Click here to access our easy-to-use census webmap, which allows one to view and assess basic demographic parameters across the entire province of Alberta, in relation to our various levels of geography.
User Guide (how to use the interactive web mapping application in GeoDiscover Alberta)
OSI mapping products, listed by date released, are available below.
- August 23, 2016: Fort McMurray residential destruction map from 2016-17 First Quarter Fiscal Update
- June 21, 2016: Population growth maps from 2016-2041 Alberta Population Projections
- May 17, 2016: National Household Survey – Aboriginal People in Alberta
- December 2014: Series of summary table maps portraying a variety of demographic information as based on the Provincial Electoral Divisions of Alberta
The OSI employs a number of different administrative and census geographic boundaries for its work, depending on the type of analysis being performed and/ or publication being prepared.
Notes about using this Data and Download Instructions
Please click on the data links below to download zipped shapefile packages for the following boundaries. The shapefile format is a popular geospatial vector data format for geographic information system (GIS) software. To save and extract the files:
- Click on the link and save the zip file to your computer in a location you choose.
- To extract the files, browse to find the file on your computer, and then right-click on the file, and select "Extract" from the drop down. The multiple files will be saved to your computer in the location you choose.
- Boundary Files - Statistics Canada Reference Guides (2016 and 2011)
- 2016 and 2011:
- 2010 and 2003:
A general term for provincially legislated areas (such as county, municipal and regional district) or their equivalents. Census divisions are intermediate geographic areas between the province/territory level and the municipality (census subdivision).
Area that is a municipality or an area that is deemed to be equivalent to a municipality for statistical reporting purposes (e.g., as an Indian reserve or an unorganized territory). Municipal status is defined by laws in effect in each province and territory in Canada.
Formed by one or more adjacent municipalities centred on a population centre (known as the core). A CMA must have a total population of at least 100,000 of which 50,000 or more must live in the core. A CA must have a core population of at least 10,000.
Small geographic areas that usually have a population between 2,500 and 8,000 persons. They are located in census metropolitan areas and in census agglomerations that had a core population of 50,000 or more in the previous census.
A small geographic unit composed of one or more adjacent dissemination blocks. It is the smallest standard geographic area for which all census data are disseminated, features a population between 400 to 700 persons, and covers the entire province of Alberta.
A grouping of complete census divisions (CDs) created as a standard geographic unit for analysis of regional economic activity.
Comprised of all the polygons that represent the areas in Alberta established as electoral divisions under the Alberta Electoral Divisions Act, and reflects the legally valid boundaries for provincial general elections and for provincial by-elections.
Wherever possible, OSI geographies and symbologies default to the mapping standards as commonly defined within the National Topographic System (NTS) Polychrome Map Standards and Specifications. To expand on these standards, where applicable, proprietary standards have also been defined following conventional and sound cartographic principles.
Metadata is kept and recorded for every spatial dataset used by OSI. All metadata is compliant with the Government of Alberta’s (GOA) standard of the ISO 19115 North American Profile. See more information on this standard.
Quality Control Standards
Every spatial deliverable in OSI undergoes a thorough Quality Control (QC) review to ensure accuracy and consistency throughout. This simple yet proprietary QC review process is rigorously enforced within OSI.
See the full set of OSI Geographic Acronyms.
For more information or if you have questions regarding any of these topics, please contact:
Manager, Geospatial Statistics
Office of Statistics and Information
Treasury Board and Finance