Map: California Home to Most Densely Populated Areas

View city population density statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau's updated list of urban areas.
by | March 26, 2012 AT 5:00 PM

The U.S. Census Bureau released an updated list of urban areas today, showing more people are migrating to population centers throughout the U.S.

New estimates indicate 80.7 percent of Americans now reside in urban areas, up from 79 percent in 2000. Population density for these areas varies greatly, ranging from about 400 residents per square mile to more than 5,000 in larger cities.

California is home to a significant number of the nation’s most densely-populated urbanized areas. Of the top 50 areas with the highest population density, all but 15 are located in the Golden State.

Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, Calif. is the most densely populated area in the country, with nearly 7,000 residents per square mile. The following 10 urbanized areas have the highest population density:

Location Population Population/sq. mile
Los Angeles, Calif. 12,150,996 6,999
San Francisco, Calif. 3,281,212 6,266
San Jose, Calif. 1,664,496 5,820
Delano, Calif. 54,372 5,483
New York, N.Y. 18,351,295 5,319
Davis, Calif. 72,794 5,157
Lompoc, Calif. 51,509 4,816
Honolulu, Hawaii 802,459 4,716
Woodland, Calif. 55,513 4,551
Las Vegas, Nev. 1,886,011 4,525

The Census Bureau estimates 95 percent of Californians reside in urban areas – the highest nationwide.  New Jersey is close behind, with urban areas accounting for 94.7 percent of the population.

Urban areas are divided into two groups: There are 486 “urbanized areas," defined as having populations of at least 50,000. The Census Bureau considers smaller areas with 2,500 to 50,000 residents to be “urban clusters.”

After the 2010 Census, 36 new urbanized areas were identified.

The Charlotte, N.C.-S.C., area grew fastest among regions with populations exceeding 1 million, jumping 64.6 percent over the decade. Austin, Texas, (51.1 percent) and Las Vegas-Henderson, Nev., (43.5 percent) also experience rapid population growth, the Census Bureau reports.

Click the markers in the map below to find population density statistics for your area:

Population Density
3,000+/sq. mile
1,500+/sq. mile
Less than 1,500/sq. mile