Map of the Month

Each month a new map is presented to the Commission to help explain important trends in the Bay Area, across the nation and around the world. These custom-crafted maps are prepared by MTC’s Data & Visualization team.

April 2012

Most Densely Populated Urban Areas In 2010

This map illustrates the Nation's top five most densely populated Urban Areas as tabulated by Census 2010. Four of these areas are in California. The San Francisco-Oakland and San Jose Urban Areas rank second and third, respectively. That the New York Metropolitan area ranks fifth on this list shows that this density ranking is greatly affected by the nature of the land area designated as urban. Census Urban Areas comprise an urban core and associated suburbs. California's urban and suburban areas are more uniform in density when compared to New York's urban core and suburban periphery which have vastly different densities. Delano ranks fourth because it has a very small land area and its population is augmented by two large California State Prisons housing 10,000 inmates.