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Author Topic: Zip Codes  (Read 4293 times)

Big John

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #50 on: January 08, 2022, 01:29:27 PM »

^^ And Iowa has 3 blocks with an even lower population.
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GenExpwy

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #51 on: January 09, 2022, 04:40:14 AM »




Anybody else find it odd that Kentucky has a lower population than Indiana, and Michigan but got 3 blocks of ZIP Codes compared to 2 for the other states.

Remember that Zip Codes are mostly assigned per Post Office (circa 1960, when there were one-third more of them), not so much by population. Every tiny little PO in Kentucky and Iowa got its own Zip Code when they were first assigned. Indiana and Michigan probably had fewer of those backwoods and crossroad PO’s, so they needed fewer Zip Codes.
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Scott5114

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #52 on: January 09, 2022, 05:41:47 AM »

Hmm, which leads to the question...Do ZIP codes belonging to dead post offices get recycled?
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cabiness42

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #53 on: January 09, 2022, 10:23:34 AM »

Hmm, which leads to the question...Do ZIP codes belonging to dead post offices get recycled?

It isn't really needed. None of the three digit blocks around here come close to using all of their possible numbers. My area (463) only uses 52 of 99 possible numbers. A neighboring area (464) only uses 11.
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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #54 on: January 09, 2022, 11:24:57 AM »

Hmm, which leads to the question...Do ZIP codes belonging to dead post offices get recycled?

It isn't really needed. None of the three digit blocks around here come close to using all of their possible numbers. My area (463) only uses 52 of 99 possible numbers. A neighboring area (464) only uses 11.

Ehh depends on where you are. In rapidly growing areas that weren't so big back when the codes were first assigned, some of the blocks come close. The 840xx block (northern/northeastern Utah) uses 82 of its 99 possible numbers, for example. However, zip code blocks like that are going to be rapidly growing areas and likely don't have many dead post offices...

Scott5114

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #55 on: January 09, 2022, 04:05:30 PM »

Hmm, which leads to the question...Do ZIP codes belonging to dead post offices get recycled?

It isn't really needed. None of the three digit blocks around here come close to using all of their possible numbers. My area (463) only uses 52 of 99 possible numbers. A neighboring area (464) only uses 11.

Ehh depends on where you are. In rapidly growing areas that weren't so big back when the codes were first assigned, some of the blocks come close. The 840xx block (northern/northeastern Utah) uses 82 of its 99 possible numbers, for example. However, zip code blocks like that are going to be rapidly growing areas and likely don't have many dead post offices...

I could see a block that contains an urban area and a lot of rural land having post offices close as rural towns dry up while new ones are needed closer in to the city.
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kalvado

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #56 on: January 09, 2022, 05:13:35 PM »

Hmm, which leads to the question...Do ZIP codes belonging to dead post offices get recycled?

It isn't really needed. None of the three digit blocks around here come close to using all of their possible numbers. My area (463) only uses 52 of 99 possible numbers. A neighboring area (464) only uses 11.

Ehh depends on where you are. In rapidly growing areas that weren't so big back when the codes were first assigned, some of the blocks come close. The 840xx block (northern/northeastern Utah) uses 82 of its 99 possible numbers, for example. However, zip code blocks like that are going to be rapidly growing areas and likely don't have many dead post offices...

I could see a block that contains an urban area and a lot of rural land having post offices close as rural towns dry up while new ones are needed closer in to the city.
I wonder if mailing addresses  actually change their zip codes when post offices close. That would be a can of worms...
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cabiness42

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #57 on: January 09, 2022, 05:36:06 PM »

Another thing to note about ZIP codes is that they're assigned by USPS and may not correspond to municipal boundaries.

ZIP Code 46410 is for Merrillville, but there are parts of the ZIP Code in Gary, and other parts in Hobart.
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ErmineNotyours

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #58 on: January 12, 2022, 01:54:31 AM »

My Zip Code changed a few years ago when they stopped distributing mail from the office downtown and moved it out to a less populated area on the edge of town.

I remember a Saturday Night Live sketch where the premise was that the Postal Service was changing the Zip Code of 90210, and the cast of Beverly Hills 90210 was worried about being associated with a code from a poorer part of town.
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jeffandnicole

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #59 on: January 12, 2022, 07:19:31 AM »

Another thing to note about ZIP codes is that they're assigned by USPS and may not correspond to municipal boundaries.

ZIP Code 46410 is for Merrillville, but there are parts of the ZIP Code in Gary, and other parts in Hobart.

Yep. Zip codes are often for a portion of a town, complete multiple towns, or mainly one town but encroaches on other towns.

On the news, if they're talking about a place in a certain town but they refer to it as in a neighboring town, they're looking at the the Zip code, not the actual town.
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SP Cook

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #60 on: January 12, 2022, 09:18:50 AM »

Town boundaries - Yes, this is a thing.  In my neck of the woods, the post office uses Hurricane (25526) for a large area including land 6 or more miles from the actual town of Hurricane.  Causes confusion in all sorts of things, mostly because businesses will have a Hurricane address, but be located just off the next exit, miles from Hurricane; and because there will be two of something (like McDonalds, a bank, etc.) one off the Hurricane exit and one off the next (Teays Valley) exit, both with a Hurricane address.

Changing and cancelling zip codes.  As I understand it, the USPS can change where it sorts the mail, and had done that a lot in the last 10 years.  Around here mail was sorted in 8 different places, but all was consolidated to just Charleston.  However, Congress has a veto over post offices closing, and they just never do.  They came out with a big list of ones they wanted to close around Appalachia, due to the population losses, but were frustrated at every turn and eventually just gave up.  I can only think of like 3 they actually got to close.
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1995hoo

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #61 on: January 12, 2022, 10:03:28 AM »

Town boundaries - Yes, this is a thing.  In my neck of the woods, the post office uses Hurricane (25526) for a large area including land 6 or more miles from the actual town of Hurricane.  Causes confusion in all sorts of things, mostly because businesses will have a Hurricane address, but be located just off the next exit, miles from Hurricane; and because there will be two of something (like McDonalds, a bank, etc.) one off the Hurricane exit and one off the next (Teays Valley) exit, both with a Hurricane address.

....

That's an annoyance here too because the post office applies "Alexandria" to a large portion of southeastern Fairfax County. Some local news reporters are aware of the difference and will sometimes refer to "the Alexandria portion of Fairfax County"; others do not. It leads to some confusion even among some residents. When my wife and I got married, I had the hardest time getting her to understand that despite what the post office says, we do not live in the City of Alexandria and we do not owe car tax to the city. She ignored me and paid a car tax bill to the City that she didn't owe (she moved out of the City prior to the due date), so we had to jump through hoops to get a refund. Pain in the arse.

On the map below, the reddish-brown area labelled simply "Alexandria" is the area the post office incorrectly calls by that name. It's part of Fairfax County. Only the blue area is properly "Alexandria."

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US 89

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #62 on: January 12, 2022, 11:20:58 AM »

I have friends who have had similar issues in the Salt Lake City area. The post office uses "Salt Lake City UT" as the recommended city name for almost everywhere with an 841xx zip code, which covers a big chunk of northern and eastern Salt Lake County. Less than half of that area is Salt Lake City proper. Some of the codes have "West Valley City UT" as the preferred address, but other than that, most of SLC's inner suburbs might as well not exist according to the post office.

The other weird thing the post office will do sometimes is assign a code to multiple cities/towns and give it a completely new name. 84013, for example, covers an area of northwestern Utah County that includes the towns of Cedar Fort and Fairfield. The assigned name for that code is "Cedar Valley UT", which is not a town at all but is the name for the valley that includes those towns as well as Eagle Mountain, which is an alternate name for 84013 even though almost all of it has its own code (84005). Fairfield is also an alternate name for 84013, but interestingly Cedar Fort is explicitly listed as a city name to avoid.

mrsman

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #63 on: January 17, 2022, 04:24:20 PM »

Town boundaries - Yes, this is a thing.  In my neck of the woods, the post office uses Hurricane (25526) for a large area including land 6 or more miles from the actual town of Hurricane.  Causes confusion in all sorts of things, mostly because businesses will have a Hurricane address, but be located just off the next exit, miles from Hurricane; and because there will be two of something (like McDonalds, a bank, etc.) one off the Hurricane exit and one off the next (Teays Valley) exit, both with a Hurricane address.

....

That's an annoyance here too because the post office applies "Alexandria" to a large portion of southeastern Fairfax County. Some local news reporters are aware of the difference and will sometimes refer to "the Alexandria portion of Fairfax County"; others do not. It leads to some confusion even among some residents. When my wife and I got married, I had the hardest time getting her to understand that despite what the post office says, we do not live in the City of Alexandria and we do not owe car tax to the city. She ignored me and paid a car tax bill to the City that she didn't owe (she moved out of the City prior to the due date), so we had to jump through hoops to get a refund. Pain in the arse.

On the map below, the reddish-brown area labelled simply "Alexandria" is the area the post office incorrectly calls by that name. It's part of Fairfax County. Only the blue area is properly "Alexandria."



This is quite interesting.

1) Do you know if there are any individual zip codes that are in both City of Alexandria and the Alexandria part of Fairfax County?

2) Is there a good alternate name that would encompass all of the neighborhoods that are in the reddish-brown portion of the map?  Perhaps something like South Alexandria?

IIRC there are similar issues with Falls Church.  The city of Falls Church (not a part of Fairfax County) is quite small.  Some neighboring sections of Fairfax County are known to the post office as Falls Church.
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cabiness42

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #64 on: January 17, 2022, 04:36:42 PM »

Town boundaries - Yes, this is a thing.  In my neck of the woods, the post office uses Hurricane (25526) for a large area including land 6 or more miles from the actual town of Hurricane.  Causes confusion in all sorts of things, mostly because businesses will have a Hurricane address, but be located just off the next exit, miles from Hurricane; and because there will be two of something (like McDonalds, a bank, etc.) one off the Hurricane exit and one off the next (Teays Valley) exit, both with a Hurricane address.

....

That's an annoyance here too because the post office applies "Alexandria" to a large portion of southeastern Fairfax County. Some local news reporters are aware of the difference and will sometimes refer to "the Alexandria portion of Fairfax County"; others do not. It leads to some confusion even among some residents. When my wife and I got married, I had the hardest time getting her to understand that despite what the post office says, we do not live in the City of Alexandria and we do not owe car tax to the city. She ignored me and paid a car tax bill to the City that she didn't owe (she moved out of the City prior to the due date), so we had to jump through hoops to get a refund. Pain in the arse.

On the map below, the reddish-brown area labelled simply "Alexandria" is the area the post office incorrectly calls by that name. It's part of Fairfax County. Only the blue area is properly "Alexandria."\

This is quite interesting.

1) Do you know if there are any individual zip codes that are in both City of Alexandria and the Alexandria part of Fairfax County?

2) Is there a good alternate name that would encompass all of the neighborhoods that are in the reddish-brown portion of the map?  Perhaps something like South Alexandria?

IIRC there are similar issues with Falls Church.  The city of Falls Church (not a part of Fairfax County) is quite small.  Some neighboring sections of Fairfax County are known to the post office as Falls Church.

I lived in Alexandria (city part) for a year, very near Landmark Mall. I just checked and it looks like 22311 and 22312 have sizable portions in both parts. There are a couple others that look like they might have a sliver in the other part.

I've never heard of that area referred to as a whole. The names I heard most often are Springfield, Franconia and Huntington, which are also the names of Metro stops.
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Road Hog

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #65 on: January 18, 2022, 05:04:34 AM »

Hmm, which leads to the question...Do ZIP codes belonging to dead post offices get recycled?
I think it's possible in rapidly-growing areas like North Texas. The city of Celina is projected to be the largest suburb in DFW by 2040 and its zip code is 75009. The next available ZIP code is 75012 because Carrollton snapped up 75010 and 75011. New ZIP codes have been added to Frisco, McKinney and Sherman just in the last few years.
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mrsman

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #66 on: January 18, 2022, 11:53:03 AM »

There definitely is a very intricate system to the numbering of the zip codes.

Here's an example:

900xx are ZIP codes for the city of Los Angeles.  The xx are carryovers from postal local zone codes that large cities had in the pre-ZIP code days.  So Los Angeles 28 became ZIP CODE: 90028

The next set of numbers comprise the suburbs that are immediately west and south of Los Angeles.  They all use the Inglewood regional post office before sorting to the individual post offices in each city. 

A full listing can be found here:

https://www.ciclt.net/sn/clt/capitolimpact/gw_ziplist.aspx?zip=902

But here is a sampling:

90201 Bell
90210 Beverly Hills
90220 Compton
90230 Culver City
90240 Downey
90245 El Segundo
90247 Gardena

So you can see that the zip codes within the 902 group were assigned in alphabetical order.  Of course, new communities were identified later, which is why you see something out of order like 90224 for Rancho Dominguez.  Back in the 1960's this was known as generally part of Compton and only later has the community formed its own identity.

The next set of numbers represent the three largest suburbs south and west of L.A. that were so big they got their own grouping codes:

903 Inglewood
904 Santa Monica
905 Torrance

(also alphabetic order)

Of course, the point of the codes is efficinecy in mail delivery, so the codes do not necessarily follow political boundaries perfectly.


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1995hoo

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #67 on: January 18, 2022, 12:24:59 PM »

....



This is quite interesting.

1) Do you know if there are any individual zip codes that are in both City of Alexandria and the Alexandria part of Fairfax County?

2) Is there a good alternate name that would encompass all of the neighborhoods that are in the reddish-brown portion of the map?  Perhaps something like South Alexandria?

IIRC there are similar issues with Falls Church.  The city of Falls Church (not a part of Fairfax County) is quite small.  Some neighboring sections of Fairfax County are known to the post office as Falls Church.

As to question #1, I don't know, but I have no reason to doubt cabiness42's answer above.

As to question #2, most neighborhoods have their own names and the post office generally allows them to be used in addresses. I live in Kingstowne, for example (somewhat near the "A" in the boldfaced black "Alexandria" on that map); Franconia is nearby, Mount Vernon is a well-known name for the area near where George Washington lived, there's also Hayfield, Huntington, Groveton, and Fort Hunt (once upon a time, Groveton and Fort Hunt High Schools were intense rivals until they were merged into the massive West Potomac High School in the 1980s). But I don't know why there would need to be a single name for the whole area anyway. The rest of Fairfax County has all sorts of names that do not necessarily reflect independent municipalities nor even towns (under Virginia law, a town is less than a city and is part of the surrounding county but has certain additional responsibilities—Falls Church is a city, but Vienna, Herndon, and Clifton are towns). Annandale is not a city or town but is a well-known place name and ZIP Code, for example. Same for Springfield, Reston, Great Falls, etc. These all seem to work well enough, so I'm not sure why the post office feels "Alexandria" is needed for southeastern Fairfax County.
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cabiness42

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #68 on: January 18, 2022, 12:34:09 PM »

I'm not sure why the post office feels "Alexandria" is needed for southeastern Fairfax County.

My guess is that having "Alexandria" on your address helps property values and that there was some politics involved.
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mgk920

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #69 on: January 19, 2022, 12:32:08 AM »

There definitely is a very intricate system to the numbering of the zip codes.

Here's an example:

900xx are ZIP codes for the city of Los Angeles.  The xx are carryovers from postal local zone codes that large cities had in the pre-ZIP code days.  So Los Angeles 28 became ZIP CODE: 90028

The next set of numbers comprise the suburbs that are immediately west and south of Los Angeles.  They all use the Inglewood regional post office before sorting to the individual post offices in each city. 

A full listing can be found here:

https://www.ciclt.net/sn/clt/capitolimpact/gw_ziplist.aspx?zip=902

But here is a sampling:

90201 Bell
90210 Beverly Hills
90220 Compton
90230 Culver City
90240 Downey
90245 El Segundo
90247 Gardena

So you can see that the zip codes within the 902 group were assigned in alphabetical order.  Of course, new communities were identified later, which is why you see something out of order like 90224 for Rancho Dominguez.  Back in the 1960's this was known as generally part of Compton and only later has the community formed its own identity.

The next set of numbers represent the three largest suburbs south and west of L.A. that were so big they got their own grouping codes:

903 Inglewood
904 Santa Monica
905 Torrance

(also alphabetic order)

Of course, the point of the codes is efficinecy in mail delivery, so the codes do not necessarily follow political boundaries perfectly.

Similarly, in the Chicagoland area, (nearly?) all locations in the City of Chicago are 606xx, starting with 60601 being a handful of blocks in the downtown area.  60606 is the Sears (or whatever it's called now) Tower, plus a couple of more downtown blocks, etc.

600xx through 605XX are sectors of suburbs starting with 600xx being the north shore suburbs and the sectors continuing anti-clockwise around the city with 605xx being the south suburbs near and along the Indiana state line.

In metro Milwaukee, WI, the city and some older inner suburbs are 532xx (some of those suburbs  (ie, West Allis and Wauwatosa)are normally addressed as 'Milwaukee, WI 532xx').   The farther out suburbs and continuing into the hinterlands are 530xx (generally north) and 531xx (generally south).

Mike
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ErmineNotyours

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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #70 on: January 19, 2022, 03:34:55 AM »


One slight flub.  He said the Post Office was using a three digit inner-city code before the full Zip Code.  Actually it was two digits.
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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #71 on: January 19, 2022, 09:54:59 AM »

Hmm, which leads to the question...Do ZIP codes belonging to dead post offices get recycled?
28335 is used by a former Dunn PO, now it is merged with 28334. Old Post office was 28335 and the new one on Clinton Ave was 28334. Nevertheless, the PO in Dunn uses 28334/5 to maintain this.  :nod:
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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #72 on: January 19, 2022, 03:14:23 PM »

Similarly, in the Chicagoland area, (nearly?) all locations in the City of Chicago are 606xx, starting with 60601 being a handful of blocks in the downtown area.  60606 is the Sears (or whatever it's called now) Tower, plus a couple of more downtown blocks, etc.

600xx through 605XX are sectors of suburbs starting with 600xx being the north shore suburbs and the sectors continuing anti-clockwise around the city with 605xx being the south suburbs near and along the Indiana state line.

Chicago also uses some ZIP codes in the 607 and 608 blocks, although most of those are assigned to adjacent suburbs, such as 60714 in Niles.  609 is the furthest-south suburban area, with Kankakee being the main PO, 60901.  IIRC, all 60xxx codes route through Chicago.

Arizona is in need of a ZIP Code expansion.  The state is assigned 850 thru 869, but 854, 858, 861, 862, and 865-869 are not used.  851 was created mostly for Pinal County only about a decade or so ago, split from 852.

All of southwest and western Arizona is part of the 853 block, despite being nowhere near the metro Phoenix area.  It could (and should, IMHO) be changed to 858xx, with Yuma as the main PO.  We're hearing rumors about the 852 block (eastern Phoenix suburbs in Maricopa County) being split again, with Mesa and Gilbert keeping 852 while Chandler, Tempe, Scottsdale, and the adjacent Native American communities moving to 854.  Nothing official yet, though.
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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #73 on: January 19, 2022, 07:05:25 PM »


One slight flub.  He said the Post Office was using a three digit inner-city code before the full Zip Code.  Actually it was two digits.

lso, "MAIL EARLY IN THE DAY!"  --  Shen I was very young, INTO THE Early-mid 1970s, mail deposited at the Appleton, WI Post Office by 0700 and destined for addresses in Appleton, WI (at the time, to all addresses in the original 54911 ZIP code) (now all active ZIP codes from 45911 to 64919) was delivered THAT DAY.  Now, it is processed in Milwaukee, WI  (530) and takes 2-3 days to be delivered.

<sigh...>

Mike
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Re: Zip Codes
« Reply #74 on: January 19, 2022, 10:56:10 PM »

27858 is where I live and it's pretty much in the inner banks of North Carolina.
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