The One Minute Geographer: Providence and the Primate City

Providence, looking toward the state capitol. Photo from

Geographers talk about primate cities. It has nothing to do with Jane Goodall and her chimps. Primate in this sense simply means the primary or dominant city (or metropolitan area) for a state or country. As a rule of thumb, if at least 20% or so of a state’s population resides in one metropolitan area, it is considered a primate city.

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Jim Fonseca

Geography professor (retired) writes The One Minute Geographer featuring This Fragile Earth. Top writer in Transportation and, in past months, Travel.