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Baltimore–Washington metropolitan area


Baltimore–Washington metropolitan area

Metropolitan Area
Baltimore's Inner Harbor
Baltimore's Inner Harbor
The National Mall in Washington
The National Mall in Washington
Downtown Rosslyn in Arlington
Downtown Rosslyn in Arlington
Country United States
State  - District of Columbia
 - Maryland
 - Virginia
 - Pennsylvania
 - West Virginia
Principal cities Baltimore, Washington, D.C. & Arlington
Alexandria, VA
Annapolis, MD
Bethesda, MD
Columbia, MD
Easton, MD
Falls Church, VA
Frederick, MD
Fredericksburg, VA
Gaithersburg, MD
Hagerstown, MD
Lexington Park, MD
Martinsburg, WV
Rockville, MD
Reston, VA
Silver Spring, MD
Towson, MD
Waynesboro, PA
Winchester, VA
Population (2013 est.)
 • CSA 9,331,587(4th)
  MSA/CSA = 2013
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EST (UTC-4)
Map of the current OMB-designated Washington-Baltimore-Arlington, DC-MD-VA-WV-PA Combined Statistical Area.

The Baltimore–Washington Metropolitan Area is a combined statistical area consisting of the overlapping labor market region of the cities of Baltimore, Maryland and Washington, D.C. The region includes Central Maryland, Northern Virginia, three counties in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia, and one county in South Central Pennsylvania. It is the most educated, highest-income, and fourth largest combined statistical area in the United States.[1][2]

Officially, the area is designated by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) as the Washington-Baltimore-Arlington, DC-MD-VA-WV-PA Combined Statistical Area. It is composed primarily of two major metropolitan statistical areas, the Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, MD MSA and the Washington–Arlington–Alexandria, DC–VA–MD–WV MSA. In addition, six other smaller urban areas not contiguous to the main urban area but having strong commuting ties with the main area are also included in the metropolitan area.[3] These are: the Hagerstown-Martinsburg, MD-WV MSA, the Chambersburg-Waynesboro, PA MSA, the Winchester, VA–WV MSA, the California-Lexington Park, MD MSA, the Easton, MD micropolitan statistical area (µSA), and the Cambridge, MD µSA.

Some counties such as Caroline and King George County, Virginia are not officially designated by the OMB as members of this metropolitan area, but still consider themselves members anyway. [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] This is mostly due to their proximity to the area, the size of their commuter population, and by the influence of local broadcasting stations. The population of the entire Baltimore–Washington Combined Statistical Area as of the Census Bureau's 2012 Population Estimates is 9,331,587.[9][10][11][12][13][14][15] The most populous city is Washington, DC, with a population of 646,449.[16] The most populous county is Fairfax County, Virginia, with a population exceeding 1.1 million.


  • Components of the metropolitan area 1
  • Regional organizations 2
    • Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments 2.1
    • Baltimore Metropolitan Council 2.2
  • List of principal cities 3
    • Baltimore area 3.1
    • Washington area 3.2
  • Economy 4
    • Primary industries 4.1
      • Biotechnology 4.1.1
      • Defense contracting 4.1.2
    • Notable company headquarters in the region 4.2
      • Maryland 4.2.1
      • Washington, D.C. 4.2.2
      • Northern Virginia 4.2.3
  • Transportation 5
    • Major airports 5.1
    • Rail transit systems 5.2
    • Major highways 5.3
  • See also 6
  • Notes 7

Components of the metropolitan area

The counties and independent cities and their groupings that comprise the metropolitan area are listed below with their 2012 population estimates. Central counties/cities (designated as such by OMB) for each MSA are shown in italics.

Regional organizations

Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments

Founded in 1957, the Maryland and Virginia state legislatures, the U.S. Senate, and the U.S. House of Representatives. MWCOG provides a forum for discussion and the development of regional responses to issues regarding the environment, transportation, public safety, homeland security, affordable housing, community planning, and economic development.[17]


  1. ^ CSA Median household income
  2. ^ Raleigh–Durham area ranks third in U.S. for college degrees
  3. ^ http://www.whitehouse.govs/default/files/omb/bulletins/2013/b-13-01.pdf
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ CO-EST2006-01-11.xls
  11. ^ CO-EST2006-01-24.xls
  12. ^ EST2006-01-51.xls
  13. ^ CO-EST2006-01-54.xls
  14. ^ List1.txt
  15. ^ List6.txt
  16. ^ "State Totals: Vintage 2012 - U.S Census Bureau". Retrieved 2013-06-04. 
  17. ^ – About Us
  18. ^ – Transportation – TPB
  19. ^ © 2011 Baltimore Metropolitan Council
  20. ^ a b About BMC – Baltimore Metropolitan Council
  21. ^ U.S. Census Bureau – Principal cities of metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas
  22. ^ Metropolitan And Micropolitan Statistical Areas And Principal Cities, November 2007, with codes
  23. ^
  24. ^ As according to Federal Aviation Administration CY 2011 Enplanement Data, BWI exceeded Dulles by less than 24,000 passengers. As of 2010, however, Dulles has an edge in international traffic.


See also

State Routes

U.S. Routes


Major highways

Rail transit systems

Major airports

The Capital Beltway (I-495) in Northern Virginia
Washington Metro
Dulles International
Reagan National Airport
Baltimore–Washington International


Northern Virginia

Washington, D.C.

Washington area:

Baltimore area:


Numbers denote Fortune 500 ranking.

Notable company headquarters in the region

Many defense contractors are based in Northern Virginia to be close to the Pentagon in Arlington. Local defense contractors include Lockheed Martin, the largest, as well as Northrop Grumman, General Dynamics, BAE Systems Inc., Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC), Booz Allen Hamilton, Leidos, Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), and Orbital Sciences Corporation.

Defense contracting

Not limited to its proximity to the National Institutes of Health, Maryland's Washington suburbs are a major center for biotechnology. Prominent local biotechnology companies include MedImmune, United Therapeutics, The Institute for Genomic Research, Human Genome Sciences and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.


Primary industries


Washington area[22]

Baltimore area


See List of cities in the Baltimore–Washington metropolitan area for a full list.[21]

List of principal cities

The [20]

The Baltimore Metropolitan Council is the equivalent organization for the Baltimore portion of the combined Baltimore–Washington metropolitan area.[19] The BMC, which was created in 1992 as the successor to the Regional Planning Council and Baltimore Regional Council of Governments, consists of the Baltimore region's elected executives, representing Baltimore City and Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Harford and Howard counties.[20]

Baltimore Metropolitan Council


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