Census tract to MSA crosswalk


Does anyone know how where to find a csv crosswalk of MSA and state/county fips? I could use this to locate census tracts in their respective MSAs. I have data with unique tract identifiers, as well as state and county FIPS. However, I can’t understand the US Census Delineation files because they don’t have unique identifiers for each metropolitan area.

Per wikipedia, there should be about 361 unique MSAs.

Thanks. Best,

The delineation files on that Census Bureau page do provide all the info you need. They list many more than 361 unique codes because they identify all CBSAs (core based statistical areas) including both metropolitan and micropolitan areas. There’s a separate column that indicates whether a given record is for a metropolitan or micropolitan area. They don’t identify tracts, but they do include state and county FIPS codes, so you could join tracts to the delineation files based on those FIPS codes to construct a complete crosswalk.

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Thanks, Johnathan. I think I understand.

I can filter out all micropolitan areas from the crosswalk, which will then leave me with only metropolitan areas. But then what is the unique MSA code (metropolitan statistical area code)? I always thought there were separate CBSA and MSA codes. If I use the CBSA code filtered for only metropolitan areas then I get about 384, which is pretty close to what I was looking for. So, I guess that is what I need?


Yes, that all sounds right. I don’t know of any distinction between CBSA and MSA codes; they should be the same thing. And when I check the Wikipedia page you linked to, I see that it lists 384 metro areas in the U.S. (excluding Puerto Rico), so that’s consistent with what you pulled from the delineation file.

Yea, that makes sense. Thanks, Johnathan.