Map of US Megaregions

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Some of the groupings are odd, and seem extremely arbitrary. Apparently [it comes from a NPO in New York](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Megaregions_of_the_United_States) that is attempting to classify certain regions of the country based upon the concept of a megalopolis, where major adjacent metropolitan areas grow into each other to the point where it basically becomes a single congruent urban environment. The model makes sense when you look at Los Angeles, or more specifically where the major cities of Ventura, Los Angeles, Orange, San Bernardino, and Riverside counties have grown into each other to become one continuous metropolitan area. However I think they’re really stretching the concept to create these Megaregions.

Las Vegas is separated from Southern California by over 200 miles, and most of that stretch has a population density of less than 1 per sq. mile. We get a lot of SoCal tourists, be we are definitely not part of Southern California.

Reno is separated from the closest Northern California city by 100 miles that passes over the highest range in the continental U.S.

Boise is over 450 miles from the region traditionally known as Cascadia, yet is grouped in with it in this map. What’s even stranger about that is Spokane, which has a similar population and higher density than Boise, and is 150 miles closer to Cascadia, is not.

The logic behind the Front Range region seems to be “Can you see part of the Rocky Mountains from your city? Ok, you’re in.” SLC’s on the opposite side of the Rocky Mountains from the “Front Range”, and ABQ is on the southern tip of the Rocky Mountain range. Neither are along the actual Front Range.

I can’t really comment on the groups in the Eastern half of the country, but it seems the NPO behind this has very little understanding of the the economic and geographical connections and distances involved with cities in the West.

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