# What total area of the USA is paved?

If you were to add up all the square kilometers or miles of parking lots, streets, and highways in the USA, how much would it be?

Could it be equivilent to the area of a whole state like Maine or so?

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• Doc E
Lv 5

Millions of hectares of cropland in the industrial world have been paved over for roads and parking lots. Each U.S. car, for example, requires on average 0.07 hectares (0.18 acres) of paved land for roads and parking space. For every five cars added to the U.S. fleet, an area the size of a football field is covered with asphalt. More often than not, cropland is paved simply because the flat, well-drained soils that are well suited for farming are also ideal for building roads. Once paved, land is not easily reclaimed. As environmentalist Rupert Cutler once noted, “Asphalt is the land’s last crop.”

The United States, with its 214 million motor vehicles, has paved 6.3 million kilometers (3.9 million miles) of roads, enough to circle the Earth at the equator 157 times. In addition to roads, cars require parking space. Imagine a parking lot for 214 million cars and trucks. If that is too difficult, try visualizing a parking lot for 1,000 cars and then imagine what 214,000 of these would look like.

However we visualize it, the U.S. area devoted to roads and parking lots covers an estimated 16 million hectares (61,000 square miles), an expanse approaching the size of the 21 million hectares that U.S. farmers planted in wheat last year. But this paving of land in industrial countries is slowing as countries approach automobile saturation. In the United States, there are three vehicles for every four people. In Western Europe and Japan, there is typically one for every two people.

At 61,000 square miles, that is bigger than the state of Georgia but smaller than Wisconsin. If you took all the paved area and made it into it's own state, it would rank 24th in area. Maine is ranked 39th at 35,385 square miles.

U.S. area devoted to roads and parking lots covers an estimated 16 million hectares (39 million acres), almost as much as the 20 million hectares that U.S. farmers plant in wheat. But this paving of land in industrial countries is slowing as countries approach automobile saturation. In the United States, there is nearly one vehicle for every person. In Western Europe and Japan, there is typically one for every two people.

Maine — Area - Total: (86,542 km2) or only 21 million acres

• lawes
Lv 4
3 years ago

Square Miles Of Usa

probably more than the state of Maine for size. There's alot of asphalt and concrete. WOW, probably the size of several states put together, when places like Texas has 5-6 (high)over pass highways too. Interesting question though.

• Kate
Lv 4
4 years ago

Not sure, but I know Camden, NJ is up there on the top 5. That's right next to my town, and it's not pretty.

• Lucy
Lv 4
4 years ago

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