2022 City Redistricting
What is Redistricting? How is it different from Gerrymandering?
Every ten years, based on US census data, local governments must reconsider and redraw their district boundaries; this process is known as redistricting. The redistricting process is meant to ensure that there is a relatively equal number of citizens in each district. People often confuse redistricting with gerrymandering, which is the process of redrawing district boundaries in a biased way to favor a particular community or political party. The major difference is the intent behind the final boundary lines; in the City of Savannah, our elected officials and city staff have gone to great lengths to ensure that the current redistricting process is focused on fair and equitable representation.
In order to establish unbiased boundaries that account for changes in population, the City of Savannah partnered with the Metropolitan Planning Commission (MPC), an independent organization that provides input on all planning matters in the Savannah-Chatham area. The MPC developed a series of maps that were presented to members of Council to get their opinions. Using that input, MPC adjusted the proposed maps, ensuring an equal distribution of population and focusing on maintaining racial distribution of the districts between the old & new boundaries. Soon, Council will agree on one proposed map and will begin the public input process, after which Council will formally adopt these maps, which will go into effect for the 2023 election.
Guiding Principles & Mandates
The guiding law of the redistricting process in Georgia comes from article nine, section two, paragraph two of our state constitution, better known as the “Home Rule”, which essentially says that municipalities, like the City of Savannah, have the authority to govern themselves on internal matters like redistricting as long as they follow relevant state and federal guidelines. For redistricting, the relevant guidelines (found in O.C.G.A. 36-35-4.1) include that redrawn districts must:
1. Be contiguous territories divided by centerlines of streets or other well-defined boundaries,
2. Have near-equal population to ensure “one person, one vote”,
3. Only be redrawn when reasonably necessary.
The proposed maps from MPC follow these guidelines and have a specific focus on maintaining the racial distribution and neighborhoods of the current districts.
Target Population Numbers
Based on the 2020 Census, the City of Savannah’s population is 147,780, an 8.43% increase from the 2010 population of 136,286. The majority of that 11,000 person growth comes from District 1, which grew by over 8,500 people. As such, the boundaries of District 1 will have the highest need for change. Because we have six aldermanic districts, the target population of each district is 24,630; according to state law, the final population of each district must be within 2.5% of the target population, so approximately 24,000 to 25,000 people in each district.
Proposed Redistricting Maps
Districts 1, 5, and 6 have layouts that are difficult to display on one map. For these districts multiple angles have been provided to capture the full district.
In addition to the digital versions below, full size printouts are on display in person. Click here for the physical addresses.
|District 1 Angle 1||District 1 Angle 2||District 2|
|District 3||District 4||District 5 Angle 1|
|District 5 Angle 2||District 6 Angle 1||District 6 Angle 2|