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America's Urban Agglomerations

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Urban agglomerations are contiguous areas of continuously developed urban territories. Urban agglomeration data have typically not been reported by the Census Bureau, the rationale being that they become progressively meaningless the larger the urban agglomeration area becomes. It remains that urban agglomerations are of interest. New information surfaces as the Census Bureau revises definitions relating to the urban geography for Census 2010.

See March 2012 Census 2010 urban area updates. This section updates soon.

United States in Global Perspective
The United Nations reports global urban agglomergation data by country. For 2009, Delhi, India at 36.5 million and Toyko, Japan at 21.7 million are reported as the largest. The UN site reports the New York agglomeration at 19.3 million which is far below the 29.0 million shown in the table below. At issue are the geographic boundaries for each area; there is no global standard definition for metros nor urban agglomeration areas.

Potential Agglomeration Areas & Census 2010
Based on Census 2000 Urbanized Areas (UAs), the Census Bureau has identified 52 potential agglomerations consisting of multiple and currently separate UAs. These agglomerations contain UAs that currently are contiguous as well as some that are in close proximity to each other and that potentially could form a continuous agglomeration when areas are redefined based on 2010 Census data.

52 Potential Agglomeration Areas Table
A table presented below lists the potential agglomerations, the component UAs, and the estimated population based on the 2006–2008 ACS 3-year estimates (3-year estimates were used because not all UAs met the 65,000 person threshold for ACS 1-year estimates).
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Census 2010 Agglomeration Designation
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Census 2000 Urban Area Criteria & Proposed Census 2010 Criteria
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Additional Information
Proximity develops geographic-demographic-economic data and analytical tools and helps organizations knit together and use diverse data in a decision-making and analytical framework. We develop custom demographic/economic estimates and projections, develop geographic and geocoded address files, and assist with impact and geospatial analyses. Wide-ranging organizations use our tools (software, data, methodologies) to analyze their own data integrated with other data. Contact Proximity (888-364-7656) with questions about data covered in this section or to discuss custom estimates, projections or analyses for your areas of interest.

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