Metropolitan statistical area

In the United States, a metropolitan statistical area (MSA) is a geographical region with a relatively high population density at its core and close economic ties throughout the area. Such regions are neither legally incorporated as a city or town would be, nor are they legal administrative divisions like counties or separate entities such as states; because of this, the precise definition of any given metropolitan area can vary with the source. A typical metropolitan area is centered on a single large city that wields substantial influence over the region (e.g., New York City or Philadelphia). However, some metropolitan areas contain more than one large city with no single municipality holding a substantially dominant position (e.g., Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex, Norfolk-Virginia Beach (Hampton Roads), Riverside–San Bernardino (Inland Empire) or Minneapolis–Saint Paul (Twin Cities)). MSAs are defined by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and used by the Census Bureau and other federal government agencies for statistical purposes.[1]


Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas (CBSAs) of the United States and Puerto Rico, Feb 2013
An enlargeable map of the 955 core based statistical areas (CBSAs) of the United States and Puerto Rico, Feb 2013. The 374 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) are shown in medium green.


U.S. Census statistics for metropolitan areas are reported according to the following definitions.

The U.S. Office of Management and Budget defines a set of core based statistical areas (CBSAs) throughout the country. CBSAs are delineated on the basis of a central urban area or urban cluster – in other words: a contiguous area of relatively high population density. CBSAs are composed of counties and county equivalents.[2] The counties containing the core urban area are known as the central counties of the CBSA. A central county is a county in which 50% of its population lives in urban areas of at least 10,000 in population, or where a population of 5,000 are located in a single urban area of at least 10,000 in population where that urban area is split between more than one county.[3] Additional surrounding counties, known as outlying counties, can be included in the CBSA if these counties have strong social and economic ties to the central counties as measured by commuting and employment. Outlying counties are included in the CBSA if the employment interchange measure (total of in- and out-commuting) is 25% or more, although these numbers are estimates and exceptions are made. Some areas within these outlying counties may be rural in nature. All counties in a CBSA must be contiguous, and a county can only be included within one CBSA.[3] In New England, towns have precedence over counties, so statistically similar areas are defined in terms of town-based units known as New England city and town areas (NECTAs).

Adjacent CBSAs are merged into a single CBSA when the central county or counties of one CBSA qualify as an outlying county or counties to the other CBSAs.[3] One or more CBSAs may be grouped together to form a larger statistical entity known as a combined statistical area (CSA) when the employment interchange measure reaches 15% or more.

As well as MSAs, CBSAs are also subdivided into micropolitan statistical areas (μSAs) for CBSAs built around an urban cluster of at least 10,000 in population but less than 50,000 in population.[3] Previous terms that are no longer used include standard metropolitan statistical area (SMSA) and primary metropolitan statistical area (PMSA).[4]

See also


  1. ^ Nussle, Jim (Nov 20, 2008). "Update of Statistical Area Definitions and Guidance on Their Uses" (PDF). Office of Management and Budget. pp. 1–2. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-11-04.
  2. ^ Census Geographic Glossary, U.S. Census Bureau
  3. ^ a b c d "Office of Management & Budget, 2010 Standards for Delineating Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas; Notice" (PDF). U.S. Government Publishing Office. National Archives and Records Administration. Retrieved 2 January 2018.
  4. ^ "Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 16 February 2010.

External links

Bay County, Florida

Bay County is a county in the U.S. state of Florida. As of the 2010 census, the population was 168,852 (Estimate of 183,974 as of 1 July 2016). Its county seat is Panama City.Bay County is included in the Panama City, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area. The county is best known for its white sand beaches and emerald green water, where large pods of dolphins swim year-round. These beaches attract hundreds of thousands of visitors from all over the world each year.

Chicago metropolitan area

The Chicago metropolitan area, or Chicagoland, is the metropolitan area that includes the city of Chicago, Illinois, and its suburbs. With an estimated CSA population of 9.9 million people and an MSA population of 9.5 million people, it is the third largest metropolitan area in the United States.The Chicago metropolitan area is one of the world's largest and most diversified economies, with more than four million employees and generating an annual gross regional product (GRP) of $680 billion in 2017. The region is home to more than 400 major corporate headquarters, including 31 in the Fortune 500.There are several definitions of the area, including the area defined by the United States Office of Management and Budget (OMB) as the Chicago–Joliet–Naperville-Aurora, IL–IN–WI Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), and the area under the jurisdiction of the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) (a metropolitan planning organization).

Cincinnati metropolitan area

The Cincinnati metropolitan area, informally known as Greater Cincinnati or the Greater Cincinnati Tri-State Area, is a metropolitan area that includes counties in the U.S. states of Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana around the Ohio city of Cincinnati. The United States Census Bureau's formal name for the area is the Cincinnati–Middletown, OH–KY–IN Metropolitan Statistical Area. As of the 2010 U.S. Census, this MSA had a population of 2,114,580, making Greater Cincinnati the 29th most populous metropolitan area in the United States, the first largest metro area entirely in Ohio, followed by Cleveland (2nd) and Columbus (3rd).The Census also lists the Cincinnati–Wilmington–Maysville, OH–KY–IN Combined Statistical Area, which adds Clinton County, Ohio (defined as the Wilmington, OH micropolitan area) and Mason County, Kentucky (defined as the Maysville, KY micropolitan area) for a 2014 estimated population of 2,208,450.The Cincinnati metropolitan area is considered part of the Great Lakes Megalopolis.

Combined statistical area

Combined statistical area (CSA) is a United States Office of Management and Budget (OMB) term for a combination of adjacent metropolitan (MSA) and micropolitan statistical areas (µSA) in the United States and Puerto Rico that can demonstrate economic or social linkage. The OMB defines a CSA as consisting of various combinations of adjacent metropolitan and micropolitan areas with economic ties measured by commuting patterns. These areas that combine retain their own designations as metropolitan or micropolitan statistical areas within the larger combined statistical area.

The primary distinguishing factor between a CSA and an MSA/µSA is that the social and economic ties between the individual MSAs/µSAs within a CSA are at lower levels than between the counties within an MSA. CSAs represent multiple metropolitan or micropolitan areas that have an employment interchange of at least 15%. CSAs often represent regions with overlapping labor and media markets.

As of September 2018, there are 172 combined statistical areas in the United States, plus another three in Puerto Rico.

Denver metropolitan area

Denver is the central city of a conurbation region in the U.S. state of Colorado. The conurbation includes one continuous region consisting of the six central counties of Adams, Arapahoe, Broomfield, Denver, Douglas, and Jefferson. The Denver region is part of the Front Range Urban Corridor.

The United States Office of Management and Budget has delineated the Denver–Aurora–Lakewood, CO Metropolitan Statistical Area consisting of ten Colorado counties: the City and County of Denver, Arapahoe County, Jefferson County, Adams County, Douglas County, the City and County of Broomfield, Elbert County, Park County, Clear Creek County, and Gilpin County. The United States Census Bureau estimates that the population was 2,888,227 as of July 1, 2017, an increase of +13.55% since the 2010 United States Census, and ranking as the 19th most populous metropolitan statistical area of the United States.The Office of Management and Budget also delineated the more extensive Denver–Aurora combined statistical area comprising the Denver-Aurora-Lakewood Metropolitan Statistical Area, the Boulder Metropolitan Statistical Area, and the Greeley Metropolitan Statistical Area.The central part of the metropolitan statistical area (MSA) includes Denver and three immediately adjacent counties: Jefferson County to the west, Adams County to the north and east, and Arapahoe County to the south and east. The continuously urbanized area extends northwest into the City and County of Broomfield, bordering Jefferson and Adams counties, and south into Douglas County, adjoining Arapahoe County. Also included in the federally defined MSA are four rural counties: Elbert County on the southeastern prairie and Clear Creek, Gilpin, and Park counties in the Rocky Mountains.

Evansville metropolitan area

The Evansville metropolitan area is the 142nd largest metropolitan statistical area (MSA) in the United States. The primary city is Evansville, Indiana, the largest city in Southern Indiana and hub for Southwestern Indiana. Other Indiana cities include Boonville, Mount Vernon, Oakland City, and Princeton. Large towns in Indiana include Chandler, Fort Branch, and Newburgh. Cities in Kentucky include Henderson, Dixon, Providence, and Robards and currently covers an area of 2,367 sq mi (6,130 km2). It is the primary metropolitan area in the Illinois–Indiana–Kentucky Tri-State Area.

Greater Boston

Greater Boston is the metropolitan region of New England encompassing the municipality of Boston, the capital of the U.S. state of Massachusetts, and the most populous city in New England, as well as its surrounding areas. The region forms the northern arc of the US northeast megalopolis and as such, Greater Boston can be described either as a metropolitan statistical area (MSA), or as a broader combined statistical area (CSA). The MSA consists of most of the eastern third of Massachusetts, excluding the South Coast region and Cape Cod; while the CSA additionally includes the municipalities of Manchester (the largest city in the U.S. state of New Hampshire), Providence (the capital and largest city of the U.S. state of Rhode Island), Worcester, Massachusetts (the second largest city in New England), as well as the South Coast region and Cape Cod in Massachusetts. While the small footprint of the city of Boston itself only contains an estimated 685,094, the urbanization has extended well into surrounding areas; the CSA is one of two in Massachusetts, the only other being Greater Springfield; and is the only CSA-form statistical area in New England which crosses into three states (Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island).

Some of Greater Boston's most well-known contributions involve the region's higher education and medical institutions. Greater Boston has been influential upon American history and industry. The region and the state of Massachusetts are global leaders in biotechnology, engineering, higher education, finance, and maritime trade.Over 80% of Massachusetts' population lives in the Greater Boston metropolitan region. Greater Boston is ranked tenth in population among US metropolitan statistical areas, home to 4,732,161 people as of the 2014 US Census estimate, and sixth among combined statistical areas, with a population of 8,099,575. The area has hosted many people and sites significant to American culture and history, particularly American literature, politics, and the American Revolution.

Plymouth was the site of the first colony in New England, founded in 1620 by the Pilgrims, passengers of the Mayflower. In 1692, the town of Salem and surrounding areas experienced one of America's most infamous cases of mass hysteria, the Salem witch trials. In the late 18th century, Boston became known as the "Cradle of Liberty" for the agitation there that led to the American Revolution.

The Greater Boston region has played a powerful commercial and cultural role in the history of the United States. Before the American Civil War, the region was a center for the abolitionist, temperance, and transcendentalist movements. In 2004, Massachusetts became the first U.S. state to legally recognize same-sex marriage as a result of the decision of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court in Boston. Many prominent American political dynasties have hailed from the Boston region, including the Adams and Kennedy families.

Harvard University in Cambridge is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States, with the largest financial endowment of any university, and whose Law School has spawned a contemporaneous majority of United States Supreme Court Justices. Kendall Square in Cambridge has been called "the most innovative square mile on the planet", in reference to the high concentration of entrepreneurial start-ups and quality of innovation which have emerged in the vicinity of the square since 2010. Both Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, also in Cambridge, have been ranked among the most highly regarded academic institutions in the world.

Greater St. Louis

Greater St. Louis is a bi-state metropolitan area that completely surrounds and includes the independent city of St. Louis (its principal city). It includes parts of both the U.S. states of Missouri and Illinois. The city core is on the Mississippi Riverfront on the border with Illinois in the geographic center of the metro area. The Mississippi River bisects the metro area in half geographically between Illinois and Missouri; however, the Missouri half is much more populous. St. Louis is the largest metro area in Missouri and the second largest in Illinois. St. Louis County is independent of the City of St. Louis and their two populations are generally tabulated separately.

The St. Louis, MO-IL metropolitan statistical area (MSA)—and the focus of this page—includes the City of St. Louis; the Illinois counties of Bond, Calhoun, Clinton, Jersey, Macoupin, Madison, Monroe, and St. Clair (known collectively as the Metro East); and the Missouri counties of Franklin, Jefferson, Lincoln, St. Charles, St. Louis County (separate from and not inclusive of the city of St. Louis), and Warren.The larger St. Louis–St. Charles–Farmington, MO–IL combined statistical area (CSA) includes all of the aforementioned MSA, plus the Farmington, MO micropolitan statistical area, which includes all of St. Francois County, Missouri, and the Centralia, IL micropolitan statistical area, which includes Marion County, Illinois.

As of 2017 data, the MSA is the 21st-largest in the country that year with a population of 2,807,338; however, the CSA is the 19th-largest in the United States, with a population of 2,911,945. Due to nearly zero growth in St. Louis paired with rapid growth in the Sun Belt and Florida, the St. Louis MSA fell out of the Top 20 Largest MSAs in the United States in 2017 for the first time since 1840.As of 2018, Greater St. Louis is home to the headquarters of ten of Missouri's eleven Fortune 500 companies, six Fortune 1,000 companies, and two of the top 30 Largest Private Companies in America, as ranked by Forbes. The area received the All-America City Award in 2008.

Harrisburg–Carlisle metropolitan statistical area

The Harrisburg–Carlisle, Pennsylvania, metropolitan statistical area is defined by the United States Census Bureau as an area consisting of three counties in Pennsylvania's Susquehanna Valley, anchored by the cities of Harrisburg and (to a lesser-extent) Carlisle. As of the 2010 census, the metropolitan statistical area (MSA) had a population of 549,475 (though a July 1, 2009 estimate placed the population at 536,919). In 2009, Harrisburg–Carlisle was the 96th largest metropolitan area in the United States. As of 2010, it is part of the defined Harrisburg–York–Lebanon, PA Combined Statistical Area, which includes York and Adams counties and has a population of 1,233,708 people making it the 43rd most populous in the United States.

Kent County, Delaware

Kent County is a county located in the central part of the U.S. state of Delaware. As of the 2010 census, the population was 162,310, making it the least populous county in Delaware. The county seat is Dover, the state capital of Delaware. It is named for Kent, an English county.Kent County comprises the Dover, DE Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is included in the Philadelphia-Reading-Camden, PA-NJ-DE-MD Combined Statistical Area.

Lexington–Fayette metropolitan area

The Lexington–Fayette metropolitan area is the 106th-largest metropolitan statistical area (MSA) in the United States. It was originally formed by the United States Census Bureau in 1950 and consisted solely of Fayette County until 1980 when surrounding counties saw increases in their population densities and the number of their residents employed within Lexington–Fayette, which led to them meeting Census criteria to be added to the MSA.

The Lexington–Fayette MSA is the primary MSA of the Lexington–Fayette–Richmond–Frankfort combined statistical area which includes the Micropolitan Statistical Areas of Frankfort (Franklin and Anderson counties), Mount Sterling (Montgomery, Bath, and Menifee counties), and Richmond–Berea (Madison and Rockcastle counties). The Lexington–Fayette–Frankfort–Richmond combined statistical area has a July 1, 2012 Census Bureau estimated population of 703,271.

List of United States counties and county equivalents

This article lists the 3,242 counties and county equivalents of the United States. The United States are divided into 3,007 counties, political and geographic subdivisions of a state. 235 other local governments and geographic places are also first-order administrative divisions of their respective state/district/territory, but are called by different names. These are referred to collectively as county equivalents by the United States Census Bureau. The 235 county equivalents include 100 equivalents in the territories (such as those in Puerto Rico), outside the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The large majority of counties and equivalents were organized by 1970. Since that time, most creations, boundary changes and dissolutions have occurred in Alaska and Virginia.Among the 50 states, 44 are partitioned entirely into counties, with no county equivalents. Louisiana is instead divided into 64 equivalent parishes, while Alaska is divided into 19 equivalent boroughs and 10 sparsely populated census areas, the latter also known collectively as the unorganized borough. Virginia is composed of a mixture of 95 counties and 38 independent cities. Maryland, Missouri and Nevada are each composed entirely of counties, except that each also has exactly one independent city: Baltimore, St. Louis, and Carson City, respectively. The District of Columbia is a single federal district. All of the above 135 exceptional cases are reckoned as county equivalents. The number of counties (or equivalents) per state ranges from the three counties of Delaware, to the 254 counties of Texas. In New England, where the town model predominates, several counties have no corresponding local governments, existing only as historical legal and census boundaries. These are the counties of Connecticut and Rhode Island, as well as 8 of Massachusetts' 14 counties. In all, the 50 states consist of 3,141 counties and equivalents. Adding the District of Columbia gives 3,142.

Similarly, the Census Bureau treats 100 subdivisions of the territories of the United States as county equivalents. These are the 78 municipalities of Puerto Rico, the three major islands of the U.S. Virgin Islands, the three districts and two atolls of American Samoa, Guam as a single island and county equivalent, the four municipalities of the Northern Mariana Islands, and the nine island territories of the U.S. Minor Outlying Islands. As in the states, each territorial county equivalent has its own INCITS/FIPS codes.

Louisville metropolitan area

The Louisville metropolitan area or Kentuckiana, also known as the Louisville–Jefferson County, Kentucky–Indiana, metropolitan statistical area, is the 45th largest metropolitan statistical area (MSA) in the United States. The principal city is Louisville, Kentucky.

It was originally formed by the United States Census Bureau in 1950 and consisted of the Kentucky county of Jefferson and the Indiana counties of Clark and Floyd. As surrounding counties saw an increase in their population densities and the number of their residents employed within Jefferson County, they met Census criteria to be added to the MSA. Jefferson County, Kentucky (contiguous with Louisville Metro), plus twelve outlying counties – seven in Kentucky and five in Southern Indiana – are now a part of this MSA. One other Kentucky county was part of the MSA in the 2000 and 2010 U.S. Censuses, but was spun off by the Census Bureau into its own Micropolitan Statistical Area in 2013.

People living in any of the MSA are said to be living in the Louisville–Jefferson County Area. Because it includes counties in Indiana, the MSA (or a large portion thereof) is regularly referred to as Kentuckiana. It is now the primary MSA of the Louisville–Jefferson County–Elizabethtown–Madison, Kentucky–Indiana combined statistical area (or Louisville CSA, which adds Hardin County, Kentucky, LaRue County, Kentucky, Jefferson County, Indiana, and Nelson County, Kentucky). The combined statistical area created by the United States Bureau of the Census in 2000 and most recently redefined in 2013 comprises the Louisville–Jefferson County MSA, the Elizabethtown–Fort Knox, Kentucky, MSA, the Bardstown, Kentucky, micropolitan statistical area and the Madison, Indiana micropolitan statistical area.

Peoria metropolitan area, Illinois

The Peoria Metropolitan Statistical Area, as defined by the United States Census Bureau, is an area consisting of five counties in Central Illinois, anchored by the city of Peoria. As of the 2010 census, the MSA had a population of 379,186 (though a 2012 estimate placed the population at 380,447). The City of Peoria, according to the estimated 2014 US Census Bureau, has 115,828 people.

Polk County, Florida

Polk County is located in the U.S. state of Florida. The county population was 602,095, as of the 2010 census. Its county seat is Bartow, and its largest city is Lakeland.

Polk County comprises the Lakeland–Winter Haven Metropolitan Statistical Area. This MSA is the 87th-most populous metropolitan statistical area and the 89th-most populous primary statistical area of the United States as of July 1, 2012.The center of population of Florida is located in Polk County, near the city of Lake Wales.Polk County is home to one public university, one state college, and four private universities. One Fortune 500 company, Publix Super Markets, has headquarters in the county.

Pueblo County, Colorado

Pueblo County ( or ) is one of the 64 counties in the U.S. state of Colorado. As of the 2010 census, the population was 159,063. The county seat is Pueblo. The county was named for the historic city of Pueblo which took its name from the Spanish language word meaning "town" or "village".

Pueblo County comprises the Pueblo, CO Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Rockford metropolitan area, Illinois

The Rockford Metropolitan Statistical Area, as defined by the United States Census Bureau, is an area consisting of four counties in north-central Illinois, anchored by the city of Rockford. As of the 2010 census, the MSA had a population of 349,431 (though a 2011 estimate placed the population at 348,360). The Rockford MSA is adjacent to the Janesville-Beloit MSA and the Chicago MSA. It forms the main part of the larger Rockford–Freeport–Rochelle Combined Statistical Area (est. pop. 455,595).

Statistical area (United States)

The United States federal government defines and delineates the nation's metropolitan areas for statistical purposes, using a set of standard statistical area definitions. As of 2013, the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) defined and delineated 388 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) and 541 micropolitan statistical areas (μSAs) in the United States and Puerto Rico. Many of these 929 MSAs and μSAs are, in turn, components of larger combined statistical areas (CSAs) consisting of adjacent MSAs and μSAs that are linked by commuting ties; as of 2013, 524 metropolitan and micropolitan areas are components of the 169 defined CSAs.

Metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas are defined as consisting of one or more adjacent counties or county equivalents with at least one urban core area meeting relevant population thresholds, plus adjacent territory that has a high degree of social and economic integration with the core, as measured by commuting ties. A metropolitan statistical area has at least one urban core with a population of at least 50,000. In a micropolitan statistical area, the largest urban core has a population of at least 10,000 but less than 50,000.

Tampa Bay Area

The Tampa Bay Area is a major populated area surrounding Tampa Bay on the west coast of Florida in the United States.

The 100 most populous metropolitan statistical areas of the United States of America
Native areas

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