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 region.[1][2] Such regions are not legally incorporated as a city or town would be and are not legal administrative divisions like counties or separate entities such as states. As a result, sometimes the precise definition of a given metropolitan area will vary between sources. The statistical criteria for a standard metropolitan area were defined in 1949 and redefined as a metropolitan statistical area in 1983.[3]

A typical metropolitan area is polycentric and no longer monocentric due to suburbanization of employment and has a large historic core city, such as New York City or Chicago.[4] Some metropolitan areas include more than one large historic core city, including the Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex, Virginia Beach–Norfolk–Newport News (Hampton Roads), Riverside–San Bernardino (Inland Empire), and Minneapolis–Saint Paul (Twin Cities).

MSAs are defined by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), which is part of the Executive Office of the President, and are used by the U.S. Census Bureau and other U.S. federal government agencies for statistical purposes.[5]

Definitions

An enlargeable map of the 939 core-based statistical areas (CBSAs) of the United States and Puerto Rico as of 2020; the 384 MSAs are shown in medium green  . In 2023, OMB revised the delineations of these CBSAs.[6]

The U.S. Office of Management and Budget defines a set of core based statistical areas (CBSAs) throughout the country, which are composed of counties and county equivalents.[7]

CBSAs are delineated on the basis of a central contiguous area of relatively high population density, known as an urban area. The counties containing the core urban area are known as the "central counties" of the CBSA; these are defined as having at least 50% of their population living in urban areas of at least 10,000 in population.[8] 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 county or counties as measured by commuting and employment. Outlying counties are included in the CBSA if 25% of the workers living in the county work in the central county or counties, or if 25% of the employment in the county is held by workers who live in the central county or counties.

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.[8] One or more CBSAs may be grouped together or combined to form a larger statistical entity known as a combined statistical area (CSA) when the employment interchange measure (EIM) reaches 15% or more.

CBSAs are subdivided into MSAs (formed around urban areas of at least 50,000 in population) and micropolitan statistical areas (μSAs), which are CBSAs built around an urban area of at least 10,000 in population but less than 50,000 in population. Some metropolitan areas may include multiple cities below 50,000 people, but combined have over 50,000 people.[8] Previous terms that are no longer used to describe these regions include "standard metropolitan statistical area" (SMSA) and "primary metropolitan statistical area" (PMSA).[9]

On January 19, 2021, OMB submitted a regulation for public comment that would increase the minimum population needed for an urban area population to be a metropolitan statistical area to be increased from 50,000 to 100,000.[10] It ultimately decided to keep the minimum at 50,000 for the 2020 cycle.[11]

On July 21, 2023, the Office of Management and Budget released revised delineations of the various CBSAs in the United States.[6]

History

The Census Bureau created the metropolitan district for the 1910 census as a standardized classification for large urban centers and their surrounding areas. The original threshold for a metropolitan district was 200,000, but was lowered to 100,000 in 1930 and 50,000 in 1940.[12] The metropolitan districts were replaced by standard metropolitan areas (SMAs) in the 1950 census, which were defined by the Bureau of the Budget (now the Office of Management and Budget) and later renamed to standard metropolitan statistical areas (SMAs) in 1959.[12][13] The modern metropolitan statistical area was created in 1983 amid a large increase in the number of eligible markets, which grew from 172 in 1950 to 288 in 1980;[12][14] the core based statistical area (CBSA) was introduced in 2000 and defined in 2003 with a minimum population of 10,000 required for micropolitan areas and 50,000 for urban areas.[12][13]

Rankings

The 387 MSAs in the United States, including those in all 50 states and the national capital of Washington, D.C. are ranked, including:

  1. The MSA rank by population as of July 1, 2022, as estimated by the United States Census Bureau[15]
  2. The MSA name as designated by the United States Office of Management and Budget[16]
  3. The MSA population as of July 1, 2022, as estimated by the United States Census Bureau[15][a]
  4. The MSA population as of April 1, 2020, as enumerated by the 2020 United States census[15][a]
  5. The percent MSA population change from April 1, 2020, to July 1, 2022[15]
  6. The combined statistical area (CSA)[17] if it is designated and the MSA is a component[18]

Puerto Rico

This sortable table lists the six metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) of Puerto Rico including:

  1. The MSA rank by population as of July 1, 2022, as estimated by the United States Census Bureau[15]
  2. The MSA name as designated by the United States Office of Management and Budget[16]
  3. The MSA population as of July 1, 2022, as estimated by the United States Census Bureau[15][a]
  4. The MSA population as of April 1, 2020, as enumerated by the 2020 United States census[15][a]
  5. The percent MSA population change from April 1, 2020, to July 1, 2022[15]
  6. The combined statistical area (CSA)[17] if the MSA is a component[18]
The six metropolitan statistical areas of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico
Rank Metropolitan statistical area 2022 estimate 2020 census Change Encompassing combined statistical area
1 San Juan–Bayamón–Caguas, PR MSA 2,043,941 2,081,265 −1.79% San Juan–Bayamón, PR Combined Statistical Area
2 Ponce, PR MSA 269,258 278,477 −3.31% Ponce–Coamo, PR Combined Statistical Area
3 Aguadilla, PR MSA 250,941 253,768 −1.11% Mayagüez–Aguadilla, PR Combined Statistical Area
4 Mayagüez, PR MSA 209,201 213,831 −2.17% Mayagüez–Aguadilla, PR Combined Statistical Area
5 Arecibo, PR MSA 180,063 182,705 −1.45% San Juan–Bayamón, PR Combined Statistical Area
6 Guayama, PR MSA 66,075 68,442 −3.46% San Juan–Bayamón, PR Combined Statistical Area

See also

Footnotes

  1. ^ a b c d Populations adjusted for new MSA delineations as redefined in 2023

References

  1. ^ "Metropolitan Areas". US Census Bureau. Retrieved December 4, 2023.
  2. ^ "Glossary". Archived from the original on July 10, 2023. Retrieved July 10, 2023.
  3. ^ Caves, R. W. (2004). Encyclopedia of the City. Routledge. pp. 459. ISBN 9780415252256.
  4. ^ Cox, Wendell (August 1, 2014). "Urban Cores, Core Cities and Principal Cities". newgeography.com. Archived from the original on July 10, 2023. Retrieved July 10, 2023.
  5. ^ Nussle, Jim (November 20, 2008). "Update of Statistical Area Definitions and Guidance on Their Uses" (PDF). Office of Management and Budget. pp. 1–2. Archived (PDF) from the original on January 21, 2017.
  6. ^ a b Executive Office of the President (July 21, 2023). "Revised Delineations of Metropolitan Statistical Areas, Micropolitan Statistical Areas, and Combined Statistical Areas, and Guidance on Uses of the Delineations of These Areas" (PDF) (Press release). Archived (PDF) from the original on July 21, 2023. Retrieved July 21, 2023.
  7. ^ Census Geographic Glossary Archived September 27, 2012, at the Wayback Machine, U.S. Census Bureau
  8. ^ a b c "2020 Standards for Delineating Core Based Statistical Areas". Federal Register. National Archives and Records Administration. Retrieved February 6, 2024.
  9. ^ "Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas". U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on September 23, 2011. Retrieved February 16, 2010.
  10. ^ "Recommendations From the Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Area Standards Review Committee to the Office of Management and Budget Concerning Changes to the 2010 Standards for Delineating Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas". Federal Register. January 19, 2021. Archived from the original on January 20, 2021. Retrieved January 21, 2021.
  11. ^ The White House (July 13, 2021). "Office of Management and Budget Announces 2020 Standards for Delineating Core Based Statistical Areas" (Press release). Archived from the original on July 16, 2021. Retrieved July 17, 2021.
  12. ^ a b c d Gardner, Todd (February 2021). Changes in Metropolitan Area Definition, 1910–2010 (PDF). Center for Economic Studies (Report). United States Census Bureau. pp. 5–6, 12. Retrieved January 26, 2024.
  13. ^ a b "History: Metropolitan Areas". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 26, 2024.
  14. ^ "Census Makes a 'Metropolis'". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. December 28, 1980. p. E2.
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i "2020 Population and Housing State Data". United States Census Bureau, Population Division. May 18, 2023. Archived from the original on June 29, 2022. Retrieved May 18, 2023.
  16. ^ a b "OMB Bulletin No. 23-01: Revised Delineations of Metropolitan Statistical Areas, Micropolitan Statistical Areas, and Combined Statistical Areas, and Guidance on Uses of the Delineations of These Areas" (PDF). United States Office of Management and Budget. July 21, 2023. Archived (PDF) from the original on July 21, 2023. Retrieved July 26, 2023.
  17. ^ a b The U.S.Office of Management and Budget (OMB) defines a CSA (CSA) as an aggregate of adjacent core-based statistical areas that are linked by commuting ties.
  18. ^ a b "OMB Bulletin No. 20-01: Revised Delineations of Metropolitan Statistical Areas, Micropolitan Statistical Areas, and Combined Statistical Areas, and Guidance on Uses of the Delineations of These Areas" (PDF). United States Office of Management and Budget. March 6, 2020. Archived (PDF) from the original on June 12, 2021. Retrieved April 24, 2020.