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Metropolitan areas of Mexico


Metropolitan areas of Mexico

Map showing the location of the Metropolitan Areas in Mexico.

Metropolitan areas in Mexico have been traditionally defined as the group of municipalities that heavily interact with each other, usually around a core city.[1] In 2004, a joint effort between CONAPO, INEGI and the Ministry of Social Development (SEDESOL) agreed to define metropolitan areas as one of the following:[1]

  • the group of two or more municipalities, in which a city with a population of at least 50,000 is located whose urban area extends over the limit of the municipality that originally contained the core city incorporating either physically or, under its area of direct influence, other adjacent predominantly urban municipalities, all of which either have a high degree of social and economic integration or are relevant for urban politics and administration; or
  • a single municipality, in which a city of a population of at least one million is located and fully contained (that is, it does not transcend the limits of a single municipality); or
  • a city with a population of at least 250,000 that forms a conurbation with other cities in the United States.

However, northwestern and southeastern states are divided into a small number of large municipalities whereas central states are divided into a large number of smaller municipalities. As such, metropolitan areas in the northwest usually do not extend over more than one municipality (and figures usually report population for the entire municipality) whereas metropolitan areas in the center extend over many municipalities.

A few metropolitan areas extend beyond the limits of one state: Greater Mexico City (Federal District, Mexico and Hidalgo), Puebla-Tlaxcala (Puebla and Tlaxcala, but excludes the city of Tlaxcala), Comarca Lagunera (Coahuila and Durango), and Tampico (Tamaulipas and Veracruz).


  • List of metropolitan areas in Mexico by population 1
  • Transnational conurbations 2
  • Megalopolis of central Mexico 3
  • See also 4
  • Notes 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7

List of metropolitan areas in Mexico by population

4 - Puebla, Puebla.

There is a total of fifty-six metropolitan areas of Mexico as defined by the following government bodies:

Rank Metropolitan Area Federative Entity 2010 Pop. 2000 Pop. Change
!000001 Greater Mexico City DF, Mexico, Hidalgo !B2147483647 20,137,152 !B2147483647 18,396,677 !D0002147483647 +9.46%
!000002 Greater Guadalajara Jalisco !B2147483647 4,434,252 !B2147483647 3,699,136 !D0002147483647 +19.87%
!000003 Greater Monterrey Nuevo León !B2147483647 4,106,054 !B2147483647 3,374,361 !D0002147483647 +21.68%
!000004 Greater Puebla Puebla, Tlaxcala !B2147483647 2,728,790 !B2147483647 2,220,533 !D0002147483647 +22.89%
!000005 Greater Toluca Mexico !B2147483647 1,936,126 !B2147483647 1,451,801 !D0002147483647 +33.36%
!000006 Greater Tijuana Baja California !B2147483647 1,751,302 !B2147483647 1,352,035 !D0002147483647 +29.53%
!000007 Greater León Guanajuato !B2147483647 1,609,717 !B2147483647 1,269,179 !D0002147483647 +26.83%
!000008 Greater Juárez Chihuahua !B2147483647 1,495,094 !B2147483647 1,218,817 !D0002147483647 +22.67%
!000009 Greater Torreón Coahuila, Durango !B2147483647 1,275,993 !B2147483647 1,007,291 !D0002147483647 +26.68%
!000010 Greater Querétaro Querétaro !B2147483647 1,097,028 !B2147483647 816,481 !D0002147483647 +34.36%
!000011 Greater San Luis Potosí San Luis Potosí !B2147483647 1,040,822 !B2147483647 850,828 !D0002147483647 +22.33%
!000012 Greater Mérida Yucatán !B2147483647 973,046 !B2147483647 803,920 !D0002147483647 +21.04%
!000013 Greater Mexicali Baja California !B2147483647 936,145 !B2147483647 764,602 !D0002147483647 +22.44%
!000014 Greater Aguascalientes Aguascalientes !B2147483647 932,298 !B2147483647 707,516 !D0002147483647 +31.77%
!000015 Greater Cuernavaca Morelos !B2147483647 875,598 !B2147483647 738,326 !D0002147483647 +18.59%
!000016 Greater Acapulco Guerrero !B2147483647 863,438 !B2147483647 791,558 !D0002147483647 +9.08%
!000017 Greater Tampico Tamaulipas, Veracruz !B2147483647 858,620 !B2147483647 746,417 !D0002147483647 +15.03%
!000018 Greater Chihuahua Chihuahua !B2147483647 851,971 !B2147483647 696,495 !D0002147483647 +22.32%
!000019 Greater Saltillo Coahuila !B2147483647 823,098 !B2147483647 637,273 !D0002147483647 +29.16%
!000020 Greater Morelia Michoacán !B2147483647 806,822 !B2147483647 659,940 !D0002147483647 +22.26%
!000021 Greater Veracruz Veracruz !B2147483647 801,122 !B2147483647 642,680 !D0002147483647 +24.65%
!000022 Greater Villahermosa Tabasco !B2147483647 755,416 !B2147483647 600,580 !D0002147483647 +25.78%
!000023 ReynosaGreater Río Bravo Tamaulipas !B2147483647 725,793 !B2147483647 524,692 !D0002147483647 +38.33%
!000024 Greater Cancún Quintana Roo !B2147483647 676,238 !B2147483647 431,128 !D0002147483647 +56.85%
!000025 Greater Xalapa Veracruz !B2147483647 666,268 !B2147483647 510,410 !D0002147483647 +30.54%
!000026 Greater Tuxtla Chiapas !B2147483647 640,881 !B2147483647 494,763 !D0002147483647 +29.53%
!000027 Greater Oaxaca Oaxaca !B2147483647 593,522 !B2147483647 460,350 !D0002147483647 +28.93%
!000028 Greater Poza Rica Veracruz !B2147483647 513,308 !B2147483647 443,419 !D0002147483647 +15.76%
!000029 Greater Pachuca Hidalgo !B2147483647 512,180 !B2147483647 375,022 !D0002147483647 +36.57%
!000030 TlaxcalaApizaco Tlaxcala !B2147483647 499,504 !B2147483647 408,401 !D0002147483647 +22.31%
!000031 Greater Matamoros Tamaulipas !B2147483647 493,308 !B2147483647 418,141 !D0002147483647 +17.98%
!000032 Greater Cuautla Morelos !B2147483647 434,153 !B2147483647 358,405 !D0002147483647 +21.13%
!000033 Greater Tepic Nayarit !B2147483647 429,161 !B2147483647 342,840 !D0002147483647 +25.18%
!000034 Greater Orizaba Veracruz !B2147483647 410,372 !B2147483647 367,021 !D0002147483647 +11.81%
!000035 Greater Nuevo Laredo Tamaulipas !B2147483647 384,018 !B2147483647 310,915 !D0002147483647 +23.51%
!000036 Greater Puerto Vallarta Jalisco, Nayarit !B2147483647 379,934 !B2147483647 244,536 !D0002147483647 +55.37%
!000037 Greater Minatitlán Veracruz !B2147483647 356,020 !B2147483647 323,389 !D0002147483647 +10.09%
!000038 Greater Coatzacoalcos Veracruz !B2147483647 347,223 !B2147483647 307,724 !D0002147483647 +12.84%
!000039 ColimaVilla de Álvarez Colima !B2147483647 333,977 !B2147483647 210,766 !D0002147483647 +58.46%
!000040 MonclovaFrontera Coahuila !B2147483647 317,314 !B2147483647 282,853 !D0002147483647 +12.18%
!000041 Greater Córdoba Veracruz !B2147483647 315,996 !B2147483647 276,553 !D0002147483647 +14.26%
!000042 ZacatecasGuadalupe Zacatecas !B2147483647 298,143 !B2147483647 232,965 !D0002147483647 +27.98%
!000043 Greater Tehuacán Puebla !B2147483647 296,894 !B2147483647 240,507 !D0002147483647 +23.45%
!000044 La PiedadPénjamo Michoacán, Guanajuato !B2147483647 249,854 !B2147483647 229,372 !D0002147483647 +8.93%
!000045 ZamoraJacona Michoacán !B2147483647 249,805 !B2147483647 216,048 !D0002147483647 +15.62%
!000046 Greater Tulancingo Hidalgo !B2147483647 239,575 !B2147483647 193,638 !D0002147483647 +23.72%
!000047 Greater Tula Hidalgo !B2147483647 205,848 !B2147483647 169,901 !D0002147483647 +21.16%
!000048 Greater Guaymas Sonora !B2147483647 203,442 !B2147483647 180,316 !D0002147483647 +12.83%
!000049 Greater San Francisco del Rincón Guanajuato !B2147483647 182,330 !B2147483647 145,017 !D0002147483647 +25.73%
!000050 Greater Piedras Negras Coahuila !B2147483647 180,701 !B2147483647 151,149 !D0002147483647 +19.55%
!000051 Greater Tehuantepec Oaxaca !B2147483647 161,343 !B2147483647 145,567 !D0002147483647 +10.84%
!000052 Greater Tecomán Colima !B2147483647 141,465 !B2147483647 127,863 !D0002147483647 +10.64%
!000053 Greater Ocotlán Jalisco !B2147483647 141,365 !B2147483647 125,027 !D0002147483647 +13.07%
!000054 Greater Rioverde San Luis Potosí !B2147483647 135,423 !B2147483647 128,935 !D0002147483647 +5.03%
!000055 Greater Acayucan Veracruz !B2147483647 112,999 !B2147483647 102,992 !D0002147483647 +9.72%
!000056 MoroleónUriangato Guanajuato !B2147483647 108,648 !B2147483647 100,063 !D0002147483647 +8.58%

Transnational conurbations

The Mexico–U.S. border separates densely populated Tijuana, Mexico (right), from San Diego, United States (left). The 2,000-mile border shared between Mexico and the U.S. is the most frequently crossed international border in the world, with 250 million legal crossings every year.[2][3]
A 3D rendered image of the Nuevo Laredo - Laredo Metropolitan Area, a bi-national urban agglomeration divided by the Rio Grande.

The United States shares a 2,000-mile (3,000 km) border with Mexico. The 2,000 miles is the most frequently crossed international border in the world, with about 250 million legal crossing every year.[2] The distribution of population and urban population in Mexico has been changed significantly by the economic interaction between settlements in its north and the United States (U.S.). The increasing population concentration in the north of Mexico is strongly associated with the development of the maquila industries there and the eventual economic effects of North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).[4] Metropolitan areas located at the border with the U.S. form transnational conurbations with deep economic and demographic interaction. For example, the San Diego – Tijuana metropolitan area consists of San Diego County in the U.S. and the municipalities of Tijuana, Playas de Rosarito, and Tecate in Mexico. The total population of the region has been estimated to be just over 5 million in 2009, making it by far the largest bi-national metropolitan area shared between the U.S. and Mexico.[5] The National Population Council (CONAPO) recognizes the existence of such metropolitan areas and defines them as the municipalities that contain a city of at least 200,000 inhabitants which share processes of conurbation with cities of the U.S.[1]

Rank Metropolitan Area Mexican State American State Population
1 Tijuana - San Diego Baja California California 5,009,170[5]
2 El Paso - Juarez Chihuahua Texas 3,045,538[5]
3 Reynosa - McAllen Tamaulipas Texas 1,500,000[5]
4 Matamoros - Brownsville Tamaulipas Texas 1,136,995[5]
5 Mexicali - Calexico Baja California California 956,223[5]
6 Nuevo Laredo - Laredo Tamaulipas Texas 747,494[5]
7 Nogales - Nogales Sonora Arizona 234,809[nb 1]
8 Piedras Negras - Eagle Pass Coahuila Texas 230,205[nb 2]
9 San Luis Río Colorado - San Luis Sonora Arizona 188,152[nb 3]
10 Ciudad Acuña - Del Río Coahuila Texas 183,750[nb 4]

Megalopolis of central Mexico

Central Mexico Megalopolis

A megalopolis is defined as a long chain of continuous metropolitan areas, or territories that are relatively integrated amongst each other, a clear example of which is the Northeast Megalopolis in the United States. In 1996, the Programa General de Desarollo Urbano del Distrito Federal first proposed this concept to refer to the megalopolis of central Mexico, which was later expanded by PROAIRE, a metropolitan commission on the environment.[6] A megalopolis, is known in Spanish as a corona regional de ciudades ("regional ring of cities"). The Megalopolis of central Mexico was defined to be integrated by the metropolitan areas of Mexico City, Puebla, Cuernavaca, Toluca and Pachuca, which may also conform complex subregional rings themselves (i.e. Greater Puebla conforming a regional ring with Atlixco, San Martín Texmelucan, Tlaxcala and Apizaco). The megalopolis of central Mexico is integrated by 173 municipalities (91 of the state of Mexico, 29 of the state of Puebla, 37 of the state of Tlaxcala, 16 of Morelos and 16 of Hidalgo) and the 16 boroughs of the Federal District,[6] with an approximate total population of almost 25 million people.

See also

Mexico portal


  1. ^ Sum of legal residents of Nogales, Sonora (213,976) and Nogales, Arizona (20,833).
  2. ^ Sum of legal residents of Eagle Pass Metropolitan Area's population (48,401) and Piedras Negras, Coahuila (154,360).
  3. ^ Sum of legal residents of San Luis Río Colorado, Sonora (164,342) and San Luis, Arizona (23,810).
  4. ^ Sum of legal residents of Ciudad Acuña, Coahuila (135,605) and Del Rio, Texas (46,682).


  1. ^ a b c /espanol/metodologias/otras/zonas_met.pdf CONAPO Áreas Metropolitanass
  2. ^ a b David M. Bridgeland, Ron Zahavi. Business Modeling: A Practical Guide to Realizing Business Value. Morgan Kaufmann, 2008. p. 134. ISBN 0-12-374151-3.
  3. ^ "Borders and Law Enforcement". U.S. Embassy Mexico. Retrieved 8 December 2009. 
  4. ^ Michael Pacione. Urban geography: a global perspective. Routledge, 2005. p. 105. ISBN 0-415-34305-4.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g "Metropolitan areas in the Americas". World Gazetteer. Archived from the original on 2007-10-01. Retrieved 8 December 2009. 
  6. ^ a b Área metropolitana del Valle de México PROAIRE

External links

  • National Population Council (CONAPO) — official website. (Spanish)
  • National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI) — official website. (Spanish)
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