Defining urban settlements

Urban growth has caused adjacent metro areas to overlap

Legal definition of a city

The term city defines an urban settlement that has been legally incorporated into an independent self-governing unit. In the United States, a city surrounded by suburbs is sometimes called a central city.

Overlapping metro areas

366 MSA's and 576 uSA's together are known as CBSA's. Recognizing that many MSA's and uSA's have close ties, the census has combined some of them into 125 combined statistical areas.
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Factors influencing site of a Settlement
How can communities in informal urban settlements be part of the solution?

Urbanized area

With the rapid growth of urban settlements, many urban residents live in suburbs, beyond the boundaries of the central city. In the United States, the central city and the surrounding built up suburbs are called urbanized area.