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Old 11-16-2008, 07:27 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
8 posts, read 40,679 times
Reputation: 18

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Hi All,

I created a graphic, which I've posted to my blog, comparing all the U.S. cities over 500,000 in population with respect to their land area and population density. I felt compelled to do this to get an idea of how the largest cities use space. The result was so interesting I thought I'd share it and see what you all think.

It can be found here:

extractsfromthenoise.blogspot.com/2008/11/american-cities-populationarea-graph.html

By the way, this is my first time posting on this forum. I've enjoyed reading various threads in the past and look forward to participating more in the future.

-Parker
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Old 11-16-2008, 07:31 PM
 
3,628 posts, read 9,026,832 times
Reputation: 2013
oh gotta love Nashville ... erm, more like Sprawlville!
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Old 11-16-2008, 07:38 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
8 posts, read 40,679 times
Reputation: 18
It's amazing I thought Houston would be the most sprawling city in the graph but it scores somewhere in the middle. I had no idea how much area some of these cities cover.
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Old 11-16-2008, 07:44 PM
 
Location: Mission Viejo, CA
2,498 posts, read 10,077,999 times
Reputation: 1595
I liked the boxes you used to represent the city's land size compared to each other. It is wierd to see a scale of the amount of space a place like Jacksonville uses compared to somewhere like Philadelphia.
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Old 11-16-2008, 07:45 PM
 
Location: Oak Park, IL
5,520 posts, read 11,974,524 times
Reputation: 3820
Very interesting. Thanks!
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Old 11-16-2008, 07:48 PM
 
Location: Oak Park, IL
5,520 posts, read 11,974,524 times
Reputation: 3820
It really is amazing how much denser NYC is than all the others. SF is second densest and trails far behind.

So the conclusion you can draw is that unless there are significant geographic constraints (island or peninsula), sprawl (low density living) is inevitable.
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Old 11-16-2008, 07:52 PM
 
Location: Oak Park, IL
5,520 posts, read 11,974,524 times
Reputation: 3820
Also, I believe Nashville, Jacksonville, and Indianapolis have a consolidated city/county government. In other words, the city limits encompass the entire county (including rural areas) which would account for the large size and low population density. It'd be interesting to compare and contrast their size/population density pre and post consolidation.
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Old 11-16-2008, 08:08 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
8 posts, read 40,679 times
Reputation: 18
Yeah, I was wondering about how to deal with the consolidated city/county government issue. It brings into question the way we define a city. For me a lot of the time it's a sense of place rather than the technical incorporated boundaries (of course, how a city is governed over time determines the qualities it will have).
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Old 11-16-2008, 08:42 PM
 
Location: Chicago
3,340 posts, read 8,517,225 times
Reputation: 1209
You should do another one with metros instead.
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Old 11-16-2008, 09:19 PM
 
Location: Chitown Bred
33 posts, read 74,729 times
Reputation: 19
Chicago is the densest city not on an island. Chicago should be renowned for density more than NY and SF who gets too much credit. Its not even like New York or Frisco has a choice. So, Chicago city planning is obviously superior.
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