Districtr is a free browser-based tool for drawing districts and mapping your community.
Help shape our democracy!
Districtr is a project of the MGGG Redistricting Lab, intended to promote public participation in redistricting around the United States. Redistricting is dividing up a jurisdiction (like a state, county, or city) into pieces that elect representatives. Where and how the lines are drawn influences everything from who has a shot at getting elected to how resources get allocated.
Since the founding of the U.S. as a representative democracy, we’ve had the ideal that districts should be a way to communicate very local interests to our wider governing bodies. This only works if districts are built around communities of shared interest.
Use this tool to amplify your voice
You can draw districts.
In the U.S., there’s a big redistricting cycle every 10 years after new Census data is released. In most states, elected representatives in the state legislature are responsible for drawing the lines—including the districts for their own re-election. Following the 2020 Census, many states, cities, and counties experimented with collecting more public mapping input than ever before, and the Districtr team was there to help.
Now you can try your hand at redistricting! It's easy to make plans of your own and share them widely with Districtr.
You can draw your community.
Communities of Interest (known as “COIs”) are groups or neighborhoods with significant shared interests that deserve consideration by representatives. Many states have rules that indicate that COIs should be kept whole by districting plans whenever possible.
But this has been one of the hardest to handle of all the priorities in the redistricting world—if you show up at a meeting to say your community matters, how does that information make its way to the line-drawers?
Districtr lets you put your community on the map (literally!) by marking places that matter to make your shared interests visible. If you are interested in learning more about best practices for COI map collection, check out our training materials.
For a detailed walkthrough of Districtr, visit our Guide page.
Where would you like to start?
Import an Existing Plan or Community Map
Features Available by Jurisdiction
The goal of Districtr is to put the tools of redistricting in the hands of the public, with an emphasis on meeting the needs of civil rights organizations, community groups, and redistricting commissions.
Districtr came about from a conversation with Lawyers for Civil Rights (LCR), the Boston arm of the national Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. LCR was describing their work with community members in Lowell, MA, who were frustrated about not having a voice in the city council. In those conversations, a few places kept coming up...
Like Clemente Park, a much-loved meeting point for the city’s Asian and Latinx populations, which felt unsafe at night because the city had not provided lighting...
And Lowell High School, the city’s only public high school, which serves over 3000 students. The city announced plans to move it from its traditional downtown location, but without sufficient outreach to communities around the city about possible new sites.
Our idea was to create a mapping tool whose fundamental principle is to ask the community what matters. With maps that build COIs around relevant zones and landmarks, paired with community narratives, we can start to see local interests come to life.
Accessibility. Participating in the redistricting process should be approachable for everyone. Districtr is engineered for maximum accessibility. It’s entirely in-browser with no login and no downloads, it works on tablets as well as computers, and we assign each plan its own web address for easy sharing.
Openness and transparency. The entire project is open source, with permissive licenses. We don’t collect any information about users.
Maps not metrics. We don’t think that good maps can be measured in one-size-fits-all metrics, so we’ve built a more lightweight mapping experience that doesn’t put scores front and center. You can export maps from Districtr in forms that can be read in the other major redistricting software.
All politics is local. We’ve got 760,000-person congressional districts and 13,000-person city council districts, and every scale in between: county commissions, school zones, library boards—you name it, we map it.
Responsiveness to the community. We aim to highlight specific local rules, principles, and priorities whenever possible. We also build event pages for organizers so they can see an overview of maps from the group at a glance.
Still have questions?
If you are interested in partnering with us or sponsoring a voting rights project, reach out to us at Districtr@mggg.org.
Our team aims to respond to requests for new modules within a week.
Project Manager: Liz Kopecky
Originating Team: Max Hully, Ruth Buck
Contributors: Jamie Atlas, Eion Blanchard, Jack Deschler, Nick Doiron, Moon Duchin, Chris Gernon, Peter Horvath, Muniba Khan, Zhenghong Lieu, JN Matthews, Anthony Pizzimenti, Heather Rosenfeld, Anna Schall, and many more