Probably one of the most comprehensive maps you’ll ever see is this “dot map” of all the jobs in the USA according to census tract, and colored according to census categories. Here is the map at a couple of different scales, showing Minnesota, the Twin Cities metro, and the 494 corridor…[One Dot = One Job. Manufacturing and Trade = Red; Professional Services = Blue; Healthcare, Education, and Government = Green; Retail, Hospitality, and Other Services = Yellow …]
This is using 2010 data, and is still pretty rough. But glancing at the data at different scales, you can begin to see the geography of our state’s economy start to emerge. For example, if you were a light rail planner staring at this map, where would you want your theoretical line to go?