Images Courtesy of Tim De Chant, Per Square Mile
It turns out that if you wanted every person in the world to move to Texas, finding room for everyone wouldn't be your biggest problem. A series of maps produced by denisty blog Per Square Mile shows that if the entire world's population- 6.9 billion people- lived at the same density level as New York City, we could all fit within the borders of the Lone Star State.
At Paris levels, we would need Arkansas, Mississippi and Louisiana. If the world lived like Houston, we would take up most of the continental United States: 1,769,085 square miles.
This doesn't mean that the whole world could actually live in Texas, considering the need for farmland, industrial space, and energy production. (Although what if all the roofs generated solar power?) And there's a lot to be said for the benefits of living in the country.
But Per Square Mile's density statistics are thought-provoking. Density is more sustainable than sprawl, and while it might be hard to convince every person on Earth to move to Texas, we could all afford to live a little closer together. (Though we don't have to live like New Yorkers.)
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More on density vs. sprawl:
How Urbanism, Building Efficiency, and Cleaner Cars Can Solve Climate Change (Book Review)
Israeli New Urbanists: Density Will Make Our Cities Better Places to Live
Are Cities Green, Or Are We Just Pigs in a Factory Farm?