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Nobody lives here: Half of the U.S. Is Totally Empty

Sachi Kobayashi

Based on 2010 census data, this infographic is a great read for data lover and nature lovers.

"As of the 2010 census, the United States consists of 11,078,300 Census Blocks. Of them, 4,871,270 blocks totaling 4.61 million square kilometers were reported to have no population living inside them. Despite having a population of more than 310 million people, 47 percent of the USA remains unoccupied."

Nature really is one of our greatest resources and treasures.

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  • Sachi Kobayashi

    Ashley, I completely agree that Native Americans are too frequently looked over. However, since this map is based on census data, I'm pretty sure they were included. Of course calling this land empty just because people don't have a physical address there is a bit misleading. The land could definitely still be in use or owned or a national park. I'm very sorry if I offended you. I only meant to post a data analysis that I thought was interesting given a lot of discussion about urbanization and housing issues. Or, to consider the fact that many Americans haven't seen most of the USA.

  • Ashley Fairbanks

    A lot of American Indian people live here. I think it's pretty ignorant and racist to keep calling land that we own and occupy "empty."

  • Pine Watt

    This is a really cool map, as someone who as driven across northern Nevada. I can attest to the desolation of such places.

    • Alessandra Rizzotti

      What do you think we can do with all the uninhabited spaces? It's interesting that a local shopping mall, office park, warehouse district or a factory may have their own Census Blocks but if people don’t live there, they will be considered “uninhabited”. It seems that we can start using spaces in diverse ways so that people can start inhabiting them.

      • Sachi Kobayashi

        Yes! I think this might include a lot of farmland, but still there's so much potential here. Perhaps we need more info before we decide what to do with all this space? Let's organize an exploration party! On a more serious note, this is also a good case for smaller more sustainable houses, which could potentially be built on more remote land with less impact.

        • Alessandra Rizzotti

          Love that idea. Exploration is key before we get into what to do with the space. How would you plan a travel route to do something like this? I could forsee this being a perfect way to Travel Like You Give a Damn. You'd be doing necessary research. Wonder if it's been done? I bet you could start a Kickstarter to flesh out paying for something like this.