This map specifically looks to minimize the number of county splits as my home senate district, number 46, unnecessarily splits Washington county instead spilling into Beaver county. Balanced alongside this are the other goals of minimizing the number of municipal splits and having compact districts. Keeping municipalities intact is important in preserving similar voices on a local level. Compactness helps to ensure that districts don’t sprawl into any areas that are far-flung in relation to the rest of the district.
The biggest challenge that I encountered while making this map was balancing the many goals I had. Especially since there were fifty districts, I had a lot of room to make different trade-offs. That still ended up leaving some less-than-ideal-looking edges on districts - such as with district 25’s boundaries in Luzerne and Lackawanna counties.However, I was also pleased that I was able to make districts 47, 46, 40, and 32 all be made up of the entirety of just two counties each.
Having drawn dozens upon dozens of redistricted maps ranging from congressional, state senate, and state house districts with Dave’s Redistricting App, I was excited to take place in this contest and use Dave’s Redistricting App. Additionally, this map, like all maps like this that I have made and continue to make, are an effort, firstly, to educate myself on how maps are drawn and can be drawn. I also am making them for others to see at least what a new option to the maps we have had in the past might look like. Ultimately, I hope that this map is a small but important step in the direction of fairer maps on all levels throughout the nation and the commonwealth for generations to come.