Square kilometre

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Square kilometre (International spelling as used by the International Bureau of Weights and Measures) or square kilometer (American spelling), symbol km2, is a multiple of the square metre, the SI unit of area or surface area.


1 km2 is equal to:

It is also approximately equal to:


The symbol "km2" means (km)2, square kilometre or kilometre squared and not k(m2), kilo–square metre. For example, 3 km2 is equal to 3×(1,000m)2 = 3,000,000 m2, not 3,000 m2.

Examples of areas of 1 square kilometre

Topographical Map grids

Part of an Ordnance Survey map, published 1952. The grid lines are at one kilometre intervals giving each square an area of one square kilometre. The map shows that the area of the island is about two square kilometres. Caldey Island map 1952.jpg
Part of an Ordnance Survey map, published 1952. The grid lines are at one kilometre intervals giving each square an area of one square kilometre. The map shows that the area of the island is about two square kilometres.

Topographical map grids are worked out in metres, with the grid lines being 1,000 metres apart.

In each case, the grid lines enclose one square kilometre.

Medieval city centres

Map of Delft, Netherlands dated 1659. The walls enclosed an area of about 1 square kilometre Dimensions of the old city of Delft.svg
Map of Delft, Netherlands dated 1659. The walls enclosed an area of about 1 square kilometre

The area enclosed by the walls of many European medieval cities were about one square kilometre. These walls are often either still standing or the route they followed is still clearly visible, such as in Brussels, where the wall has been replaced by a ring road, or in Frankfurt, where the wall has been replaced by gardens. The approximate area of the old walled cities can often be worked out by fitting the course of the wall to a rectangle or an oval (ellipse). Examples include

The walled city of Delft was approximately rectangular.
The approximate length of rectangle was about 1.30 kilometres (0.81 mi). [6]
The approximate width of the rectangle was about 0.75 kilometres (0.47 mi). [6]
A perfect rectangle with these measurements has an area of 1.30×0.75 = 0.9 km2
The medieval city is roughly rectangular with rounded north-east and north-west corners.
The maximum distance from east to west is 1.36 kilometres (0.85 mi). [6]
The maximum distance from north to south is 0.80 kilometres (0.50 mi). [6]
A perfect rectangle of these dimensions would be 1.36×0.80 = 1.088 km2.
The medieval city of Brugge, a major centre in Flanders, was roughly oval or elliptical in shape with the longer or semi-major axis running north and south.
The maximum distance from north to south (semi-major axis) is 2.53 kilometres (1.57 mi). [6]
The maximum distance from east to west (semi-minor axis) is 1.81 kilometres (1.12 mi). [6]
A perfect ellipse of these dimensions would be 2.53 × 1.81 × (π/4) = 3.597 km2.
Chester is one of the smaller English cities that has a near-intact city wall. [7]
The distance from Northgate to Watergate is about 855 metres. [6]
The distance from Eastgate to Westgate is about 589 metres. [6]
A perfect rectangle of these dimensions would be (855/1000) × (589/1000) = 0.504 km2.


Parks come in all sizes; a few are almost exactly one square kilometre in area. Here are some examples:

Golf courses

Using the figures published by golf course architects Crafter and Mogford, a course should have a fairway width of 120 metres and 40 metres clear beyond the hole. Assuming a 6,000 metres (6,600 yd) 18-hole course, an area of 80 hectares (0.8 square kilometre) needs to be allocated for the course itself. [17] [Note 1] Examples of golf courses that are about one square kilometre include:

Other areas of one square kilometre or thereabouts

See also


  1. Assume that each hole requires (6000÷18 + 40) = 373 metres in length. The area needed is (18 × 373 × 120 ÷ 10,000) = 80.64 ha (1 hectare = 10,000 square metres).

Related Research Articles

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Munds Park, Arizona CDP in Arizona, United States

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Independence Township, Michigan Charter township in Michigan, United States

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Stansbury Park, Utah CDP and Township in Utah, United States

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The following are examples of orders of magnitude for different lengths.

Sharm El Sheikh City in South Sinai, Egypt

Sharm El Sheikh is an Egyptian city on the southern tip of the Sinai Peninsula, in South Sinai Governorate, on the coastal strip along the Red Sea. Its population is approximately 73,000 as of 2015. Sharm El Sheikh is the administrative hub of Egypt's South Sinai Governorate, which includes the smaller coastal towns of Dahab and Nuweiba as well as the mountainous interior, St. Catherine and Mount Sinai. The city and holiday resort is a significant centre for tourism in Egypt, while also attracting many international conferences and diplomatic meetings.

Beaver Island State Park

Beaver Island State Park is a New York state park located on Grand Island in northwestern Erie County, New York in the United States. It is situated at the southern end of the island on the bank of the Niagara River and served by the Beaver Island Parkway, a 2.72-mile (4.38 km) highway linking the park to Interstate 190 (I-190).

Alyth Human settlement in Scotland

Alyth is a town in Perth and Kinross, Scotland, 5 miles northeast of Blairgowrie and about 17 miles northwest of Dundee. In 2016 the town had an estimated population of 2,400.

Anacostia Park

Anacostia Park is operated by the United States National Park Service. It is one of Washington, D.C.'s largest and most important recreation areas, with over 1200 acres (4.9 km2) at multiple sites. Included in Anacostia Park is Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens and Kenilworth Marsh. Hundreds of acres are available for ballfields, picnicking, basketball, tennis, and the Anacostia Park Pavilion has some 3300 square feet of space for roller skating and special events. The Langston Golf Course offers an 18-hole course as well as a driving range, and three concession-operated marinas, four boat clubs, and a public boat ramp provide for access to the tidal Anacostia River for recreational boating.

Greater Grand Forks Greenway

The Greater Grand Forks Greenway is a huge greenway bordering the Red River and Red Lake River in the twin cities of Grand Forks, North Dakota and East Grand Forks, Minnesota. At 2,200 acres (9 km2), the Greenway is more than twice the size of New York City's Central Park. It has an extensive, 20-mile (32 km) system of bike paths, which are used by bikers, walkers, joggers, and rollerbladers. In 2007, the system was designated as a National Recreation Trail by the National Park Service.

Nicholls, Australian Capital Territory Suburb of Canberra, Australian Capital Territory

Nicholls is a suburb in the Canberra, Australia district of Gungahlin. It was named after Sir Douglas Nicholls (1906–1988) who was born at Cummeragunja Aboriginal mission, New South Wales and who was a footballer, pastor, activist and a former Governor of South Australia and was gazetted on 18 October 1991. Streets are named after various sportsmen and sportswomen.

Guildford, New South Wales Suburb of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Guildford is a suburb of Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Guildford is located 20 kilometres west of the Sydney central business district, in the local government area of Cumberland City Council. Guildford is part of the Greater Western Sydney region. Guildford is the home of the first KFC in Australia.

Horseshoe Resort

Horseshoe Resort, formerly Horseshoe Valley Ski Club, is a southern Ontario ski resort and four season vacation destination. Located north of Barrie, the resort is about 1 hour 15 minutes driving time from Toronto. The resort enjoys a long ski season due to snow making abilities. Acquired by Skyline International Development Inc. in July 2007, Horseshoe Resort is spread out over 680 acres of land. The resort offers two golf courses, a Shizen Spa, 101 rooms at the on-site Inn and 40 condo-style suites, two year-round restaurants, 11,400 square feet of meeting and banquet facilities, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a full gym and over 40 km of trails connected to the Copeland Forest suitable for hiking, biking and snowshoeing.

Highway 49 and Provincial Trunk Highway 49 is a highway in the east central portion of the Canadian province of Saskatchewan and a very short highway in province of Manitoba. It runs from Saskatchewan Highway 35 between the communities of Fosston and Hendon to Saskatchewan – Manitoba border, before ending at Provincial Trunk Highway 83 south of the community of Benito. The combined highway is about 166.8 km (103.6 mi) in length, 165.2 km (102.7 mi) is in Saskatchewan and 1.2 km (0.7 mi) is in Manitoba.

Brookwater, Queensland Suburb of Ipswich, Queensland, Australia

Brookwater is a suburb of Ipswich in the City of Ipswich, Queensland, Australia. It is one of the suburbs of the Greater Springfield Development. At the 2016 census, the suburb recorded a population of 3,524.

Woking Town in England

Woking is a town in northwest Surrey, England. It is at the southwestern edge of the Greater London Urban Area and is a part of the London commuter belt, with frequent trains and a journey time of approximately 24 minutes to Waterloo station. Woking is 23 miles (37 km) southwest of Charing Cross in central London. Woking town itself, excluding its narrowly contiguous built-up area which extends from West End to West Byfleet, has a population of 62,796, and the UK Government has recorded its Built Up Area as 5% more populous than its borough with 105,367 residents in 2011, the highest in the county.

Pyongyang Golf Course

Pyongyang Golf Club is situated on the banks of Taicheng Lake, 27 kilometres (17 mi) from central Pyongyang along the Youth Hero Highway. The 18‑hole 72‑par course covers 120 hectares with 45 hectares of green and is approximately 7,000 metres (23,000 ft) long. Its clubhouse covers 2,700 square metres (29,000 sq ft), includes a pro shop and a restaurant that is said to be the best in the country.

North Adelaide Golf Course

North Adelaide Golf Course is a 54 hole golf course in Adelaide, South Australia. The golf course is situated in the park lands which surround the City of Adelaide. The course consists of three courses, the Par 69 North Course, the Par 71 South Course, and an 18 hole Par 3 course. The North Adelaide Golf Course is perhaps the only golf course of its size to be located only a kilometre away from the business heart of a capital city.

Greenlink Rotary Park Trail System Urban park in Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada

Greenlink Rotary Park Trail System is a Canadian urban park located in the community of Sydney, part of Nova Scotia's Cape Breton Regional Municipality. The park incorporates the Greenlink Trail System, the Rotary Park Off Leash Park, as well as a disc golf course. Much of the park is forested, with ponds, a stone dam, and streams in the valleys; a few acres are open lawn area, suitable for informal recreation. The park encompass 52 acres (21 ha) within the former city's boundaries.


  1. "UnitConversion.org Area Converter". web page. UnitConversion.org. 2009. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
  2. There are 0.386102159 international square miles in a square kilometer while there are 0.386100614 US Survey square miles in the same measure. This is because the US Survey measures are very slightly larger than the international measures. [1]
  3. There are 247.105381467 international acres in a square kilometre while there are only 247.104393047 of the very slightly larger US Survey acres. [1]
  4. An International square mile equals 2.58998811 km2 while the slightly larger US Survey square mile equals 2.58999847 km2. [1]
  5. 1 acre (International) = 0.004046856 km2 while 1 acre (US Survey) = 0.004046873 km2 [1]
  6. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Measurements taken from Google Earth
  7. Howe, Steve. "Chester: A Virtual Stroll around the Walls" . Retrieved 7 October 2012.
  8. "Medway Council Riverside Country Park". web page. Medway Council. 2012. Archived from the original on 19 April 2012. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
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  10. "California Department of Parks and Recreation Rio de Los Angeles State Park". web page. State of California. 2012. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
  11. "Parks & Recreation Central Park, Center Junction, Iowa". web page. Jones County Tourism Association. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
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  21. "Sharm el Sheikh Golf Courses: Sharm el Sheikh, South Sinai, Egypt". web page. TravelSmart Ltd: World Guides. Retrieved 11 June 2012.
  22. "Belmont Golf Club, Lake Macquarie, History". web page. Belmont Golf Club. Retrieved 11 June 2012.
  23. "Jerusalem - The Old City". web page. The American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise. 2012. Retrieved 6 July 2012. Actually, about 89 hectares.
  24. "Science Vale UK". web page. Abbey House. Retrieved 7 July 2012.
  25. "Invest in Poland". web page. Polish information and foreign investment agency. Retrieved 7 July 2012.
  26. "Guildford Grammar School". waterhall.com.au. Archived from the original on 10 April 2013. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
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