Metro Boston Community Resilience Scorecard

Overview: The Metro Boston Community Resilience Scorecard provides a simplified assessment of neighborhood resilience for 14 communities in the metro Boston region. The dashboard shows grades for every census tract in these communities across several categories: exposure to climate hazards including flooding and extreme heat; social vulnerability based on demographics; and existing natural infrastructure that improves resilience such as parks and tree canopy. Every census tract is graded across each category with either an A, B, C, D, or F.

How to use the scorecard viewer: The web viewer and associated dashboard is designed to be relatively simple to use and should work effectively on desktop computers, tablets and smart phones. To use the application, open it from the icon link provided above in a browser window.

The orange area boundaries on the map are Census Tracts which roughly equate to neighborhoods. To obtain a score for a census track, you must zoom in on a block group of interest and then select the block group. There are multiple ways to zoom in on the map; you can use your mouse scroll wheel with the cursor over the map or you can shift and drag a box over the map or you can double click with the mouse. On a tablet or phone you can pinch the map to zoom in or out. To pan you can click down and drag the map. Once you zoom in you use the Point select tool found in the upper left corner of the map. With the tool on, click a block group to get it’s score card.

In addition to viewing the score card you can also view the analysis layers used to generate the scores. To turn on these layers click the Layer Control icon in the upper right corner of the map, a box will appear that will allow you to turn off and on layer visibility. Under Overlays you’ll be able to turn the overlay layers on and off. Viewing these overlay layers will show you the what part of the block group is covered by the scorecard layers. A legend of the visible layers can also be opened by clicking the Legend button in the upper right corner of the map.

About the data: The following list provides additional details about the overlay layers used in the analysis:

  • Coastal flooding (Existing Woods Hole Group Flood Exceedance Probability 2030)
    • Percentage of census tract vulnerable to coastal flooding as a result of sea level rise and storm surge.
  • Interior flooding/stormwater runoff (Estimated runoff potential calculated using NRCS curve number methodology)
    • Percentage of census tract that is at higher risk for stormwater runoff which can lead to flooding and degraded water quality during heavy rain events.
  • Urban heat islands (Trust for Public Land 2021 UHI analysis)
    • Percentage of census tract that is an “Urban Heat Island” – locations where temperatures are hotter than surrounding areas as a result of pavement and buildings radiating heat.
  • Lack of tree canopy (2019/2020 Descartes data)
    • Percentage of census tract with low tree canopy cover; tree canopy is important because it shades, cools, improves air quality, and provides other benefits.
  • Lack of parks (Parkserve priority locations for new parks)
    • Percentage of census tract that lacks adequate park access – calculated as areas that do not have a park within a 10-min walk.
  • Social vulnerability index (Equity criteria based on EPA EJScreen data and the American Community Survey)
    • Percentage of census tract home to populations that are often disproportionately vulnerable to environmental stressors. Specific metrics include race, low income, language barriers, education level, and others.

Questions? Contact Guadalupe Garcia, Trust for Public Land’s Boston Parks for People Program Manager: