I am looking for employment density in the USA.

Dimensions needed:

  • Per industry
  • Per sq. ft. (per county or smaller could be acceptable too)
  • Per year if available, otherwise something relatively recent

I guess "per sq. ft." makes more sense in cities, areas with too few datapoints would have wider averaging areas.


i think you are looking for the american community survey's summary files? if you want annual estimates, you will have to settle for geographies with at least 65,000 individuals. if you can forgo annual estimates, the 5-year pooled file will give you areas down to 20,000 population.


if you want very very small areas and can accept slightly more dated information, use the 2010 census summary file instead.

ordinarily i would recommend using the acs microdata (person-level rather than aggregations), but you will get smaller geographies by using the aggregated information. if you can accept pumas as your smallest area, you can work with acs microdata here



The Smart Location Database by the EPA includes, among other things, gross employment density (jobs per acre) on unprotected land. It breaks it up by categories like Retail, Office, Industrial, etc.

Los Angeles


That's a pretty meaningless notion: employees, apart from forestry & agriculture, are concentrated in specific (sometimes humongously large) facilities, not spread like butter on a toast. You can look at lease square footage and employment data in annual reports of individual companies.

Boeing Everett WA factory Boeing Everett, WA, factory. Credit: Map data ©2015 Google Imagery ©2015 , DigitalGlobe, Island County, U.S. Geological Survey, USDA Farm Service Agency

If you want all-encompassing data by industry, there's the Census County Business Patterns (and smaller, like ZIP code) dataset: http://www2.census.gov/econ2013/CBP_CSV/ (available for counties, metro areas, and quasi-ZIP code areas with a two years' lag).

Note: today, the switch to telecommuting employees and outside contractors makes statistics-derived numbers for service industries even more meaningless.

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