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Methods of designating the urban periphery range from the use of municipal boundaries to definitions based on counties. Definitions based on municipal boundaries may classify as rural much of what would typically be considered suburban. Definitions that delineate the urban periphery based on counties may include extensive segments of a county that many would consider rural.

We have selected a representative set of nine alternative rural definitions and compare social and economic indicators from the 2000 decennial census across the nine definitions. We chose socioeconomic indicators (population, education, poverty, etc.) that are commonly used to highlight differences between urban and rural areas.

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    Data sources from the U.S. Census Bureau Back to top
    List of all places in the U.S. and their 2000 population Download as Excel 9/4/2006
    List of urban areas in the U.S. and their 2000 population Download as Excel 9/4/2007

    Last updated: Thursday, July 05, 2012

    For more information contact: John Cromartie

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