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metropolitan area (ESN 11775 )

Metropolitan areas are defined as officially recognized contiguous urban areas, generally including both cities and the towns surrounding them. Official sources of metropolitan area definition are generally government agencies at the national level, including census bureaus. Cities making up a metropolitan area have a high degree of social and economic interaction, and normally possess tightly integrated transportation systems so that all parts are within commuting distance of each other or of a common center.

A population center comprising several cities in geographical proximity with close economic interaction.