Greater Los Angeles Area

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The Greater Los Angeles Area, or the Southland, is a term for the agglomeration of urbanized area around the county of Los Angeles, California. The terms are defined to refer to the more-or-less continuously urbanized area stretching from Ventura or even Santa Barbara in the north to the southern border of Orange County, and from the Pacific Ocean to the Inland Empire. The Greater Los Angeles area is generally taken to include the Los Angeles metropolitan area, the Inland Empire, and Ventura County. The term "Greater Los Angeles" does not include San Diego and Imperial counties, whose urbanized areas are not geographically continuous with the urbanized area surrounding Los Angeles. However, the term "Southland" is sometimes used to refer to all of Southern California.[3]

It is a term used for the Combined Statistical Area (a group of interacting metropolitan areas) sprawled over five counties in the southern part of California, namely Los Angeles County, Orange County, San Bernardino County, Riverside County and Ventura County. It has been one of the fastest growing regions in the United States for decades, first in Los Angeles County, then Orange County, and now in the Inland Empire. As of 2005, the official estimate of the population of the Los Angeles metropolitan area is more than 12.9 million, while the larger five-county region has a population of over 17.6 million. Either definition makes it the second-largest core-based statistical area in the country, behind the New York metropolitan area.[4]

The United States Census Bureau has designated the five county region as the Los Angeles-Long Beach-Riverside combined statistical area, with a July 1, 2006 population estimate of 17,776,000.[5][non-primary source needed] According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the Los Angeles metropolitan area has a total area of 4,850 square miles (12,561.442 km2), while the wider combined statistical area covers 33,954 square miles (87,940.456 km2), but more than half of this is the sparsely populated eastern areas of Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

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