The KML files are simplified representations of selected geographic areas from the Census Bureau’s MAF/TIGER geographic database. These boundary files are specifically designed for small scale thematic mapping.
When possible, generalization is performed with intent to maintain the hierarchical relationships among geographies and to maintain the alignment of geographies within a file set for a given year.
To improve the appearance of shapes, areas are represented with fewer vertices than detailed TIGER/Line equivalents. Some small holes or discontiguous parts of areas are not included in generalized files.
Generalized boundary files are clipped to a simplified version of the U.S. outline. As a result, some off-shore areas may be excluded from the generalized files.
For more details about these files, please see our Cartographic Boundary File Description page.
KML is a file format used to display geographic data in a tool such as Google Earth or Google Maps. For shapefile versions of these files, please see our Cartographic Boundary Shapefiles.
Cartographic Boundary files are available in KML format starting with 2013.