The legally required criteria that apply to the creation of voting districts are as follows:
- Each council district shall contain nearly equal population, with any deviations justified by other traditional redistricting criteria.
- A districting plan shall be drawn in a manner that complies with the state and federal Constitutions, the Federal Voting Rights Act and state other applicable law, including the CVRA.
- Each council district shall not be drawn with race as the predominant factor in violation of the principles established by the United States Supreme Court in Shaw v. Reno, 509 U.S. 630 (1993).
- Each council district shall be contiguous, meaning that there can be no islands or parts of the district that are not attached to the whole.