RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Monday’s Richmond City Council meeting will be the last time the public can share comments on the city’s redistricting draft plan before a final vote next month.

Virginia and localities across the commonwealth have undergone the legally required redistricting process to change voting districts using new census data to ensure they reflect the population changes that have taken place over the last decade.

Like many localities, Richmond had to push back its process due to census delays. But the city council has held meetings for months on the redrawing of the boundaries of Richmond’s nine voter districts, which are used to elected members of the city council and school board.

Richmond’s population grew over the last decade, with census data showing it going from 204,000 to 226,610. According to the city, the adjusted population number used for redistricting is 228,501.

That figure requires each district to have 25,389 residents in them to ensure they are equal, but deviations within 5% are acceptable for redistricting. The city’s 2nd, 6th and 7th districts exceeded 5% variation and the 3rd District’s population is 11% below, according to the city of Richmond.

To be within the 5%, Richmond’s North Central 2nd District needs to move at least 614 residents, the city’s Gateway 6th District needs to move at least an estimated 182 residents to another district and 37 residents living in the East End 7th District need to be shifted out.

The North Side 3rd District has to take in an estimated 1,537 residents to be within that 5% margin, figures from the city show.

This portion of the Demonstration Map 2C map proposal shows the new district boundaries in red and the current 3rd District in green. The purple section shows the current 2nd District and the yellow is the current 6th District. (courtesy of the city of Richmond)

The city council reviewed several plans before agreeing to put the “Demonstration Map 2C” proposal forward for public comment. Under the proposal, the 3rd District will gain a portion of the 2nd and 6th districts.

A few blocks of the current 2nd District — a portion of W. Broad Street to Monument Avenue/N. Cleveland Street to N. Arthur Ashe Boulevard — will move to the 1st District. But the 2nd District will get a portion of the city’s 5th District under the proposal.

This portion of the Demonstration Map 2C map proposal shows the new district boundaries in red and the current 2nd District in purple. The peach-colored section is the current 1st District and the pink section is the current 5th District. (courtesy of the city of Richmond)

While the city presented the proposal for public comments, it is not the finalized plan. The City Council is slated to introduce a final plan on Monday.

New congressional and state legislative maps that will remain in place for the next decade were approved by the Virginia Supreme Court. The court was put in charge of the state’s political redistricting, a once-a-decade process of redrawing electoral districts with 2020 Census data.

You can follow along Monday’s meeting online and share a comment on the draft plan here. The city will also accept written comments:

  • Mail: Richmond Decennial Voter District Redistricting – Richmond City Hall; 900 E. Broad Street, Suite 305; Richmond, Virginia 23219
  • Fax: (804) 646-5468
  • Email: redistricting@rva.gov

The council is expected to vote on a plan at the final public hearing on the redistricting proposal on May 23.