An Application Of The Shevky-Bell Grid System Of Urban Analysis
While attending Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, luring the summer of 1962, I became acquainted with the problem of urban analysis. In order to understand this problem we oust first have a knowledge of the "Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area."
The United States Census Department has developed a definition of the "Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area" which designation in the 1960 Census replaced the concept of "Standard Metropolitan Area" of the 1960 Census, but retained essentially the same notion of metropolitan community. The SMSA, as it is commonly abbreviated consists of one central city of not less than fifty thousand population, the entire county in which it is located and other contiguous counties which are places of employment or residence for the concentration of workers in the central county. These places must also possess extensive economic and social interrelations with the central county. Sometimes two cities of the required size will fall within twenty miles of each other, in which case they are considered in the same SMSA.
If we look at a table of the SMSA's in the United States we see that we are rapidly becoming a nation of metropolitan communities. SMSA's contain about sixty per cent of the total United States population. Of the total population growth between 1940 and 1950, SMSA growth was eighty per cent. It is even more striding to note that ninety-seven per cent of the growth in United States population from 1950 to 1955 occurred in SMSA's. We have become a nation of metropolitan dwellers. The problems of the metropolitan area have become the problems of the entire nation. It is for this reason sociologists are attempting to arrive at a workable method of urban analysis so that they night study the urban area and from their findings benefit society.