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Try to Visualize the Ten Million People Who Live in Los Angeles County

Image of 2,166 People

Illustration of just 2,166 people, 9.71 million shy of Los Angeles County's currently estimated 9.72 million people. Los Angeles Almanac image.

With a recent estimated population of about 9.72 million people, Los Angeles County is the most populous county in the United States. Not only is this is a lot of people for a single U.S. county, but it is, in fact, a larger population than the entire individual state populations of 40 of 50 U.S. states (or almost 60% of of all the countries in the world*). With the image above, we though we might try to illustrate what 9.7 million people would look like. Yet, after rendering just 2,166 person images, we discovered that our available time and computer resources were no match for the job. The image we were forced to end with illustrates a mere two percent of one percent of 9.7 million people. Try to imagine this image multiplied 4,488 times in order to arrive at an actual illustration of 9.7 million people.

So, we moved on to find images of a lot more than 2,166 people. We settled on one that many Angelenos are already familiar with - Dodger Stadium. Of course, Dodger Stadium doesn’t accommodate 9.7 million spectators at one time, but it can seat 56,000 people. That, however, still doesn't come anywhere close to 9.7 million people.

Dodger Stadium, 2012

Game day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, 2012. Photo by Carol M. Highsmith, from the Carol M. Highsmith Archive at the Library of Congress.

How many Dodger Stadiums it would take to seat all 9.7 million people residing in Los Angeles County? We came up with just over 174 Dodger Stadiums.

Imagine that.

Number of Dodger Stadiums Needed to Seat all of Los Angeles County

174 Dodger Stadiums imagined across the Los Angeles County landscape, surrounding Downtown Los Angeles. Credit: Los Angeles Almanac-created image from an image by 12019 at Pixabay.com.

* If Los Angeles County were a separate country on its own, its population, according to recent U.S. Census estimates, would rank it just slightly smaller than Portugal, but larger than either Israel, Austria, or Switzerland.

If every Los Angeles County resident were to gather into a tightly-packed crowd (about 18 by 18 inches per person - a bit tight, but not causing anyone to suffocate), everyone in the county would comfortably fit into the land area of Signal Hill, or 2.19 square miles, with a little space left over. If that doesn’t seem like much, consider that the entire world's estimated population of 8.1 billion people (February 2024), using the same dimensions per person, would fill about 1,782 square miles, or less than half of all of Los Angeles County's land area.