San Diego County, California

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San Diego County, California
County of San Diego
FA18CHornetOverSanDiegoNov08.jpgMission San Diego de Alcalá - church.jpg
Camp Pendleton front gate.jpgHotelDelCoronado.jpg
Torrey Pines State Park Valley.jpgBolder field, jacumba.....jpg
Images, from top down, left to right: F/A-18 Hornet flying over San Diego, Mission San Diego de Alcalá, Camp Pendleton's main gate, Hotel del Coronado's main building, Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve, Jacumba Mountains
Flag of San Diego County, California
Official seal of San Diego County, California
Location in the state of California
Location in the state of California
California's location in the United States
California's location in the United States
Country United States of America
State California
FormedFebruary 18, 1850[1]
County seatSan Diego
Largest citySan Diego (population and area)
 • TypeCouncil–manager
 • BodyBoard of Supervisors
 • Board of Supervisors
 • Chief Administrative OfficerHelen Robbins-Meyer
 • Total4,525.52 sq mi (11,721.0 km2)
 • Land4,199.89 sq mi (10,877.7 km2)
 • Water325.62 sq mi (843.4 km2)
Population (2010 Census)
 • Total3,095,313
 • Density680/sq mi (260/km2)
Time zonePacific Standard Time (UTC-8)
 • Summer (DST)Pacific Daylight Time (UTC-7)
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San Diego County, California
County of San Diego
FA18CHornetOverSanDiegoNov08.jpgMission San Diego de Alcalá - church.jpg
Camp Pendleton front gate.jpgHotelDelCoronado.jpg
Torrey Pines State Park Valley.jpgBolder field, jacumba.....jpg
Images, from top down, left to right: F/A-18 Hornet flying over San Diego, Mission San Diego de Alcalá, Camp Pendleton's main gate, Hotel del Coronado's main building, Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve, Jacumba Mountains
Flag of San Diego County, California
Official seal of San Diego County, California
Location in the state of California
Location in the state of California
California's location in the United States
California's location in the United States
Country United States of America
State California
FormedFebruary 18, 1850[1]
County seatSan Diego
Largest citySan Diego (population and area)
 • TypeCouncil–manager
 • BodyBoard of Supervisors
 • Board of Supervisors
 • Chief Administrative OfficerHelen Robbins-Meyer
 • Total4,525.52 sq mi (11,721.0 km2)
 • Land4,199.89 sq mi (10,877.7 km2)
 • Water325.62 sq mi (843.4 km2)
Population (2010 Census)
 • Total3,095,313
 • Density680/sq mi (260/km2)
Time zonePacific Standard Time (UTC-8)
 • Summer (DST)Pacific Daylight Time (UTC-7)

San Diego County is a county located in the southwestern corner of the State of California. It is the south-westernmost county in the 48 contiguous United States. The City of San Diego is its county seat and by far the largest city in the county. According to the census of 2010, San Diego County had a population of 3,095,313 people, making it the second most populous county in California, following Los Angeles County.

San Diego County has 70 miles (110 km) of coastline. Most of the county has a mild Mediterranean climate to semiarid climate, though there are mountains that receive frost and snow in the wintertime.[2]

There are also 16 naval and military installations of the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps, and the U.S. Coast Guard in San Diego County. These include the Naval Base San Diego, Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, and Naval Air Station North Island.

San Diego County defines the metropolitan statistical area of San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos and as Greater San Diego. San Diego County is also part of the San Diego–Tijuana metropolitan area. This area has about five million people and it is the largest metropolitan area shared between the United States and Mexico.

Arising from an effort by the state government to identify regional economies, San Diego County and Imperial County are part of the Southern Border Region, one of nine such regions. As a regional economy, the Southern Border Region is the smallest but most economically diverse region in the state. However, the two counties maintain weak relations and have little in common aside from their common border.[3]

From north to south, San Diego County extends from the southern borders of Orange County and Riverside County to the Mexico–United States border and Baja California. From west to east, San Diego County stretches from the Pacific Ocean to its boundary with Imperial County.


The area which is now San Diego County has been inhabited for more than 10,000 years by Kumeyaay (also called Diegueño), Luiseño, Cupeño and Cahuilla Indians.[4]

In 1542, the Portuguese-born explorer Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo, sailing for Spain, claimed San Diego Bay for the Spanish Empire, and he named the site San Miguel.[5] In November of 1602, Sebastián Vizcaíno surveyed the harbor and what are now Mission Bay and Point Loma and named the area for Saint Didacus, a Spaniard more commonly known as San Diego.[6] European settlement in what is now San Diego County began with the founding of the San Diego Presidio and Mission San Diego de Alcalá by Spanish soldiers and clerics in 1769.[7] This county was part of Alta California under the Viceroyalty of New Spain until the Mexican declaration of independence. From 1821 through 1848 this area was part of Mexico.

San Diego County became part of the United States as a result of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in 1848, ending the U.S.-Mexican War. This treaty designated the new border as terminating at a point on the Pacific Ocean coast which would result in the border passing one Spanish league south of the southernmost portion of San Diego Bay, thus ensuring that the United States received all of this natural harbor.

San Diego County was one of the original counties of California, and it was created at the time of California statehood in 1850.[8]

At the time of its establishment in 1850, San Diego County was relatively large, and included all of southernmost California which was south and east of Los Angeles County. As such it included areas of what are now Inyo County and San Bernardino County, as well as all of what is now Riverside County and Imperial County.[8]

During the later part of the 19th century, there were numerous changes in the boundaries of San Diego County, when various areas became separated for the counties mentioned above. The most recent changes were the establishments of Riverside County in 1893[9] and Imperial County in 1907.[10] Imperial County was also the last county to be established in California, and after this division, San Diego no longer extended from the Pacific Ocean to the Colorado River, and it no longer covered the entire border between California and Mexico.


North County communities. Coastal cities are in dark blue, unincorporated coastal communities are in light blue. Inland cities are in dark yellow, unincorporated inland communities are in light yellow. This map does not show neighborhoods of the city of San Diego that are considered[by whom?] to be part of North County, such as Del Mar Heights, Rancho Peñasquitos, and Rancho Bernardo. Some areas in white in this general region that are in white would be also considered part of North County, but only cities and unincorporated communities are colored on this map.
Many of the cities seen from the sky as part of the San Diego-Tijuana metropolitan area.
East County communities in red. In dark red are the cities and towns of Santee and El Cajon which mark the western edge of East County. Unincorporated communities are in light red, including Lakeside and Alpine.
South Bay communities of San Diego County. The cities and towns of National City, Chula Vista, and Imperial Beach are in dark orange. The unincorporated community of Bonita is in light orange. San Ysidro and Otay Mesa, neighborhoods of the city of San Diego, are in pink.

According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 4,525.52 square miles (11,721.0 km2), of which 4,199.89 square miles (10,877.7 km2) (or 92.80%) is land and 325.62 square miles (843.4 km2) (or 7.20%) is water.[11] The county is larger in area than the combined states of Rhode Island and Delaware.[12]

San Diego County has a varied topography. On its western side is 70 miles (110 km) of coastline.[13] Most of San Diego between the coast and the Laguna Mountains consists of hills, mesas, and small canyons. Snow-capped (in winter) mountains rise to the northeast, with the Sonoran Desert to the far east. Cleveland National Forest is spread across the central portion of the county, while the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park occupies most of the northeast. Although the western third of the county is primarily urban, the mountains and deserts in the eastern two-thirds of the county consist primarily of undeveloped backcountry. Most of these backcountry areas are home to a native plant community known as chaparral. San Diego County contains more than a million acres (4,000 km²) of chaparral, twice as much as any other California county.[14]

North San Diego County is known as North County; the exact geographic definitions of "North County" vary, but it includes the northern suburbs and sometimes certain northern neighborhoods of the City of San Diego.

The eastern suburbs are collectively known as East County, though most still lie in the western third of the county. The southern suburbs and southern detached portion of the city of San Diego, extending to the Mexican border, are collectively referred to as South Bay.

Periodically the area has been subject to wildfires that force thousands to evacuate. The most recent have been the Cedar Fire in 2003 and the Witch Creek Fire in 2007. California defines a fire season in which fires are most likely to occur, usually between the months of late July and late October (which are the driest months of the area). Signs are posted in numerous spots of the county providing information on the level of threats from fires based on weather conditions.[citation needed]


Under the Köppen climate classification system, the San Diego area straddles areas of Mediterranean climate (CSa) to the north and semi-arid climate (BSh) to the south and east.[15] As a result, its often described as "arid Mediterranean" and "semi-arid steppe". San Diego's climate is characterized by warm, dry summers and mild winters with most of the annual precipitation falling between November and March. The city has mild, mostly dry weather, with an average of 201 days above 70 °F (21 °C) and low rainfall (9–13 inches (23–33 cm) annually). Summer temperatures are generally warm, with average highs of 70–78 °F (21–26 °C) and lows of 55–66 °F (13–19 °C). Temperatures exceed 90 °F (32 °C) only four days a year. Most rainfall occurs from November to April. Winter temperatures are mild, with average high temperatures of 66–70 °F (19–21 °C) and lows of 50–56 °F (10–13 °C).

The climate in the San Diego area, like much of California, often varies significantly over short geographical distances resulting in microclimates. In San Diego's case this is mainly due to the city's topography (the Bay, and the numerous hills, mountains, and canyons). Frequently, particularly during the "May gray/June gloom" period, a thick marine layer will keep the air cool and damp within a few miles of the coast, but will yield to bright cloudless sunshine approximately 5–10 miles (8.0–16.1 km) inland. This happens every year in May and June.[16] Even in the absence of June gloom, inland areas tend to experience much more significant temperature variations than coastal areas, where the ocean serves as a moderating influence. Thus, for example, downtown San Diego averages January lows of 50 °F (10 °C) and August highs of 78 °F (26 °C). The city of El Cajon, just 10 miles (16 km) northeast of downtown San Diego, averages January lows of 42 °F (6 °C) and August highs of 88 °F (31 °C).[17][18]

Rainfall along the coast averages about 10 inches (25 cm) of precipitation annually, which occurs mainly during the cooler months of December through April. Though there are few wet days per month during the rainy period, rainfall can be heavy when it does fall. However, the rainfall is greater in the higher elevations of San Diego. Some of the higher areas of San Diego can receive 11–13 inches (28–33 cm) of rain a year.

Climate data for San Diego Int'l Airport (1981–2010 normals)
Average high °F (°C)65.1
Daily mean °F (°C)57.1
Average low °F (°C)49.0
Rainfall inches (mm)1.98
Avg. rainy days (≥ 0.01 in)
Mean monthly sunshine hours239.3227.4261.0276.2250.5242.4304.7295.0253.3243.4230.1231.33,054.6
Percent possible sunshine75747071585770716869737469
Source: NOAA (sun 1961–1990)[19][20]

Largest cities in San Diego County by population[edit]

Largest cities (2010 census population):

Largest towns, 2010 Census
San Diego
Chula Vista
El Cajon
San Marcos
National City
La Mesa

Cities and towns in San Diego County[edit]

Incorporated cities and towns

Unincorporated communities

Indian reservations[edit]

San Diego County has 18 federally recognized Indian reservations, more than any other county in the United States.[21] Although they are typical in size to other Indian reservations in California (many of which are termed "Rancherías"), they are relatively tiny by national standards,[citation needed] and all together total 200.2 square miles (518.5 km²) of area.

Boundaries (counties and municipalities)[edit]

National protected areas[edit]

State parks and protected areas[edit]


There are 236 mountain summits and peaks in San Diego County[23] including:

Bays and lagoons[edit]



Transportation and infrastructure[edit]

Major highways[edit]

Border crossings to Mexico[edit]


Light rail and local transit[edit]

The Port of San Diego[edit]

Primary Civilian Airports[edit]


San Diego County contains three public state universities: University of California, San Diego; San Diego State University; and California State University, San Marcos. Major private universities in the county include University of San Diego (USD), Point Loma Nazarene University (PLNU), Alliant International University (AIU), and National University.

Within the county there are 24 public elementary school districts, 6 high school districts, and 12 unified school districts. There are also 5 community college districts.[24]

There are two separate public library systems in San Diego County: the San Diego Public Library serving the city of San Diego, and the San Diego County Library serving all other areas of the county. In 2010 the county library had 33 branches and two bookmobiles; circulated over 10.7 million books, CDs, DVDs, and other material formats; recorded 5.7 million visits to library branches; and hosted 21,132 free programs and events. The San Diego County Library is one of the 25 busiest libraries in the nation as measured by materials circulated.[25][26]



Tourism plays a large part in the economics of the San Diego metropolitan area. Tourists are drawn to the region for a well rounded experience, everything from shopping to surfing as well as its mild climate. Its numerous tourist destinations include Horton Plaza, Westfield UTC, Seaport Village, Westfield Mission Valley and Fashion Valley Mall for shopping. SeaWorld San Diego and Legoland California as amusement parks. Golf courses such as Torrey Pines Golf Course and Balboa Park Golf Course. Museums such as the San Diego Museum of Man, San Diego Museum of Art, Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, San Diego Natural History Museum, USS Midway Museum, and the San Diego Air and Space Museum. Historical places such as the Gaslamp Quarter, Balboa Park and Old Town San Diego State Historic Park. Wildlife refuges, zoos, and aquariums such as the Birch Aquarium at Scripps, San Diego Zoo's Safari Park, San Diego Zoo and San Diego-La Jolla Underwater Park. Outdoor destinations include the Peninsular Ranges for hiking, biking, mountainboarding and trail riding. Surfing locations include Swami's, Stone Steps Beach, Torrey Pines State Beach, Cardiff State Beach, San Onofre State Beach and the southern portion of Black's Beach.

The region is host to the second largest cruise ship industry in California which generates an estimated $2 million annually from purchases of food, fuel, supplies, and maintenance services.[27] In 2008 the Port of San Diego hosted 252 ship calls and more than 800,000 passengers.[28]


San Diego is the headquarters of the U.S. Navy's Eleventh Naval District and is the Navy's principal location for West Coast and Pacific Ocean operations.[29] Naval Base San Diego, California is principal home to the Pacific Fleet (although the headquarters is located in Pearl Harbor). NAS North Island is located on the north side of Coronado, and is home to Headquarters for Naval Air Forces and Naval Air Force Pacific, the bulk of the Pacific Fleet's helicopter squadrons, and part of the West Coast aircraft carrier fleet.

The Naval Special Warfare Center is the primary training center for SEALs, and is also located on Coronado. The area contains five major naval bases and the U.S. Marines base Camp Pendleton. Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton is the major West Coast base of the United States Marine Corps and serves as its prime amphibious training base.[30] It is located on the Southern California coast, bordered by Oceanside to the south, San Clemente to the north, and Fallbrook to the east.

U.S. Navy[edit]

U.S. Marine Corps[edit]

U.S. Coast Guard[edit]



San Diego PadresBaseballMajor League BaseballPETCO Park
San Diego ChargersFootballNational Football LeagueQualcomm Stadium

Sites of interest[edit]



San Diego County is served by many newspapers. The major regional paper is The San Diego Union-Tribune, also known as U-T San Diego, which is ranked 25th in the country.[31] The Union-Tribune serves both San Diego County and neighboring Imperial County. The former North County Times, based in Escondido and serving portions of Riverside County and North County, was purchased by the Union-Tribune in 2012 and closed down. For about a year after absorbing the North County Times the Union-Tribune published a North County edition,[32] but the regional edition was later abandoned.[33] The Los Angeles Times is also delivered in portions of the county. Many of the area's cities, towns and neighborhoods have their own local newspapers; the Union Tribune bought eight local weeklies in 2013 and is continuing to publish them as independent local newspapers.[33] The San Diego Daily Transcript reports business and legal news. Privately published papers like the Military Press Newspaper and the Navy Dispatch serve the military community both on and off base.

Other media[edit]

County Television Network is a public-access television cable channel, offering a "hometown blend of C-SPAN, the Lifetime, History, Travel, and Discovery channels" for the county, and funded by fees paid by cable companies.[34]

Law, government and politics[edit]


The Government of San Diego County is defined and authorized under the California Constitution, California law, and the Charter of the County of San Diego.[35] Much of the Government of California is in practice the responsibility of county governments such as the Government of San Diego County. The County government provides countywide services such as elections and voter registration, law enforcement, jails, vital records, property records, tax collection, public health, and social services. In addition the County serves as the local government for all unincorporated areas.[36] Some chartered cities such as San Diego and Chula Vista provide municipal services such as police, public safety, libraries, parks and recreation, and zoning. Other cities such as Del Mar and Vista arrange to have the County provide some or all of these services on a contract basis.

The county government is composed of the elected five-member Board of Supervisors, several other elected offices and officers including the Sheriff, the District Attorney, Assessor/Recorder/County Clerk, and Treasurer/Tax Collector, and numerous county departments and entities under the supervision of the Chief Administrative Officer such as the Probation Department. In addition, several entities of the government of California have jurisdiction conterminous with San Diego County, such as the San Diego Superior Court.

Under its foundational Charter, the five-member elected San Diego County Board of Supervisors is the county legislature. The board operates in a legislative, executive, and quasi-judicial capacity. As a legislative authority, it can pass ordinances for the unincorporated areas (ordinances that affect the whole county, like posting of restaurant ratings, must be ratified by the individual city). As an executive body, it can tell the county departments what to do, and how to do it. As a quasi-judicial body, the Board is the final venue of appeal in the local planning process.

As of January 2013 the members of the San Diego County Board of Supervisors are:

For several decades, ending in 2013, all five supervisors were Republican, white, graduates of San Diego State University, and had been in office since 1995 or earlier. The Board was criticized for this homogeneity, which was made possible because supervisors draw their own district lines and are not subject to term limits.[37] (In 2010 voters put term limits in place, but they only apply going forward, so that each incumbent supervisor can serve an additional two terms before being termed out.[38]) That pattern was broken in 2013 when Slater-Price retired; she was replaced by Democrat Dave Roberts, who won election to the seat in November 2012 and was inaugurated in January 2013.[39]

The San Diego County Code is the codified law of San Diego County in the form of ordinances passed by the Board of Supervisors. The Administrative Code establishing the powers and duties of all officers and the procedures and rules of operation of all departments.

The county motto is "The noblest motive is the public good." County government offices are housed in the historic County Administration Building, constructed in 1935-1938 with funding from the Works Progress Administration.[40]


Voter registration statistics[edit]

Cities by population and voter registration[edit]


San Diego County vote
by party in presidential elections
201245.0% 536,72652.2% 626,9572.5% 30,266
200843.8% 541,03254.0% 666,5812.3% 27,890
200452.5% 596,03346.3% 526,4371.2% 13,881
200049.6% 475,73645.7% 437,6664.7% 45,232
199645.8% 402,87644.1% 389,96410.3% 91,311
199235.7% 352,12537.2% 367,39727.1% 267,124
198860.2% 523,14338.3% 333,2641.5% 12,788
198465.3% 502,34433.4% 257,0291.3% 9,894
198060.8% 435,91027.3% 195,41011.9% 85,546
197655.7% 353,30241.6% 263,6542.7% 16,839
197261.8% 371,62734.3% 206,4553.8% 23,055
196856.3% 261,54036.1% 167,6697.7% 35,654
196450.3% 214,44549.7% 211,8080.0% 33
196056.4% 233,04543.3% 171,2590.3% 1,106
195664.5% 195,74235.2% 106,7160.4% 1,147
195263.5% 186,09135.9% 105,2550.6% 1,688
194849.4% 101,55247.8% 98,2172.8% 5,690
194445.4% 75,74653.9% 89,9590.6% 1,059
194043.3% 55,43455.6% 71,1881.2% 1,488
193635.0% 35,68663.5% 64,6281.5% 1,540
193241.5% 35,30553.6% 45,6225.0% 4,223
192867.1% 47,76932.0% 22,7490.9% 633
192449.0% 22,7266.4% 2,94444.7% 20,721
192063.8% 19,82627.3% 8,4789.0% 2,783

San Diego County has historically been thought of as a Republican stronghold. The Republican presidential nominee carried the county in every presidential election from 1948 through 2004, except in 1992 when Bill Clinton won a plurality. In 2008, Barack Obama became the first Democratic presidential candidate to win a majority of votes in San Diego County since World War II; he won a majority of county votes again in 2012.

San Diego County vote
by party in gubernatorial elections
201049.8% 452,20544.0% 399,845
200665.5% 509,05930.2% 234,938
200359.5% 485,56323.6% 192,605
200251.7% 342,09540.6% 268,278
199846.3% 340,83449.5% 364,169
199463.4% 477,43932.0% 240,937
199057.1% 383,95936.4% 244,759
198665.2% 381,09431.5% 184,395
198252.8% 330,03744.6% 279,113
197835.9% 197,16757.5% 316,223
197454.2% 249,44442.8% 196,930
197060.1% 253,37837.5% 158,098
196663.8% 252,07036.2% 142,890
196255.8% 201,96942.4% 153,389

The city of San Diego itself is more Democratic than the county's average and has voted for Democrats Clinton, Gore, Kerry, and Obama, respectively, in the last six presidential elections. In the 2004 presidential election, San Diego, Encinitas, National City, Del Mar, and some other areas voted for John Kerry; San Marcos, Escondido, Carlsbad, Oceanside, Coronado, Santee, Poway, El Cajon, and Vista overwhelmingly backed George W. Bush. Chula Vista, La Mesa, Lemon Grove, Solana Beach, and Imperial Beach are considered swing areas of the county – Chula Vista and Imperial Beach narrowly backed Al Gore in 2000 but narrowly voted for Bush in 2004, while Solana Beach switched from Bush in 2000 to Kerry in 2004. La Mesa narrowly voted for Bush both times, and Lemon Grove narrowly went Democratic both times. However, all of these swing areas as well as Oceanside voted for Obama in 2008.

One unique feature of the political scene is the use of Golden Hall, a convention facility next to San Diego's City Hall, as "Election Central." The County Registrar of Voters rents the hall to distribute election results. Supporters and political observers gather to watch the results come in; supporters of the various candidates parade around the hall, carrying signs and chanting; candidates give their victory and concession speeches and host parties for campaign volunteers and donors at the site; and television stations broadcast live from the floor of the convention center.[43] The atmosphere at Election Central on the evening of election day has been compared to the voting portion of a political party national convention.[44]

In the House of Representatives, all of California's 50th, 52nd, and 53rd districts and parts of the 49th and 51st districts are in the county. The seats are held by Republicans Darrell Issa (49th district) and Duncan D. Hunter (50th district) and Democrats Juan Vargas (51st district), Scott Peters (52nd district), and Susan Davis (53rd district).

In the State Assembly, parts of the 71st and 75th districts and all of the 76th-80th districts are in the county. As of January 2013 assemblymembers are: District 71, Brian W. Jones (R); District 75, Marie Waldron (R); District 76, Rocky J. Chavez (R); District 77, Brian Maienschein (R); District 78, Toni Atkins (D); District 79, Shirley Weber (D); and District 80, Lorena Gonzalez (D). [45]

In the State Senate, all of the 39th district and parts of the 36th, 38th and 40th districts are in the county. As of January 2013 senators are: District 36, Joel Anderson (R); District 38, Mark Wyland (R); District 39, Marty Block (D); and District 40, Ben Hueso (D).

On Nov. 4, 2008 San Diego County voted 53.8% for Proposition 8 which amended the California Constitution to ban same-sex marriages, thus restoring Proposition 22 which was overturned by a ruling from the California Supreme Court. However the city of San Diego, along with Del Mar, Encinitas, and Solana Beach, voted against Proposition 8.[46]

According to the San Diego County Registrar of Voters, as of June 2013, there are 1,556,739 registered voters in San Diego County. Of those, 547,897 (35.2%) are registered Democratic, 526,306 (33.8%) are registered Republican, 51,993 (3.3%) are registered American Independence Party, 11,657 (0.7%) are registered Libertarian, 7,675 (0.5%) are registered Green, 4,012 (0.3%) are registered Peace & Freedom and 401,340 (25.8%) declined to state a political party.[47]

Metropolitan Statistical Area[edit]

The United States Office of Management and Budget has designated San Diego County as the San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area.[48] The United States Census Bureau has ranked the San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area as the 17th most populous metropolitan statistical area and the 18th most populous primary statistical area of the United States as of July 1, 2012.[49][50] Greater San Diego ranks as the 38th largest metropolitan area in the Americas.


The following table includes the number of incidents reported and the rate per 1,000 persons for each type of offense.

Cities by population and crime rates[edit]


This collection of 116 census tracts in San Diego County has a population of 615,092 and a per capita income of $44,131, about 50 percent more than that of California and the United States.[53]

Half of the county's population lives in San Diego and Chula Vista.

Despite having a per capita income that ranks between the Los Angeles metropolitan area and the San Francisco Bay Area, San Diego County has relatively few places with a both a high population and levels of income significantly higher than its state and the United States. The San Diego metropolitan area only has two places with a both a population of over 50,000 per capita income of over $40,000: Carlsbad and Encinitas. In contrast, the Los Angeles metropolitan area has 10 and the San Francisco Bay Area has 12. (See California locations by income.) Even when controlling for population, the San Diego metropolitan area has unusually few large areas with high per capita incomes compared to the state's other two major metropolitan areas. This is because much of the county's high-income residents are concentrated in the northern part of the city of San Diego, which is reported as one unit for most demographic purposes.

The county's largest continuous high-income urban area has the appearance of a triangle constructed from a first point on the northern edge of Carlsbad, a second point southeast of Escondido, and a third point on the southern edge of La Jolla. The region is pictured to the right. It contains all or most of the cities of Carlsbad, Encinitas, Solana Beach, Del Mar, and Poway in addition to a substantial portion of northern San Diego.[53]


Places by population, race, and income[edit]


Historical population
Est. 20123,177,0632.6%
U.S. Decennial Census[61]
2012 Estimate[62]

The 2010 United States Census reported that San Diego County had a population of 3,095,313. The racial makeup of San Diego County was 1,981,442 (64.0%) White, 158,213 (5.1%) African American, 26,340 (0.9%) Native American, 336,091 (10.9%) Asian (4.7% Filipino, 1.6% Chinese, 1.4% Vietnamese, 0.8% Indian, 0.7% Korean, 0.6% Japanese, 0.2% Laotian, 0.2% Cambodian, 0.2% Thai, 0.5% Other Asian), 15,337 (0.5%) Pacific Islander, 419,465 (13.6%) from other races, and 158,425 (5.0%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 991,348 persons (32.0%).[63]


As of 2009 Census Bureau estimates, there were 3,053,793 people, 1,067,846 households, and 663,449 families residing in the county. The population density was 670 people per square mile (259/km²). There were 1,142,245 housing units at an average density of 248 per square mile (96/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 79.4% White American, 5.6% Black or African American, 1% Native American, 10.4% Asian, 0.5% Pacific Islander, 10.3% from other races, and 3.6% from two or more races. 31.3% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 67.0% spoke only English at home; 21.9% spoke Spanish, 3.1% Tagalog and 1.2% Vietnamese.


In 2000 there were 994,677 households out of which 33.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.7% were married couples living together, 11.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.3% were non-families. 24.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.73 and the average family size was 3.29.

In the county the population was spread out with 25.7% under the age of 18, 11.30% from 18 to 24, 32.0% from 25 to 44, 19.8% from 45 to 64, and 11.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females there were 101.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 99.7 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $47,067, and the median income for a family was $53,438. Males had a median income of $36,952 versus $30,356 for females. The per capita income for the county was $22,926. About 8.9% of families and 12.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 16.5% of those under age 18 and 6.8% of those age 65 or over.

In 2000, only about 3% of San Diego County residents left the county for work while 40,000 people commuted into the metropolitan area.[64]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Percentage of registered voters with respect to total population. Percentages of party members with respect to registered voters follow.
  2. ^ Only larceny-theft cases involving property over $400 in value are reported as property crimes.
  3. ^ Other = Some other race + Two or more races
  4. ^ Native American = Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander + American Indian or Alaska Native


  1. ^ "Chronology". California Counties. California State Association of Counties. Retrieved 2012-05-14. 
  2. ^ climate map
  3. ^ [1] Economics
  4. ^ kumeyaay website
  5. ^ San Diego Historical Society
  6. ^ Journal of San Diego History, October 1967
  7. ^
  8. ^ a b Coy, Owen C.; PhD (1923). California County Boundaries. Berkeley: California Historical Commission. p. 221. ASIN B000GRBCXG. 
  9. ^ Ibid. 207
  10. ^ Ibid. 113
  11. ^ "Census 2000 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Counties". United States Census. Retrieved February 13, 2011. 
  12. ^ [2]
  13. ^ Gerber, James ed. Economic Profile of the San Diego-Tijuana Region: Characteristics for Investment and Governance Decisions. Institute for Regional Studies of the Californias. 1995. p.11
  14. ^ The California Chaparral Field Institute
  15. ^ M. Kottek; J. Grieser, C. Beck, B. Rudolf, and F. Rubel (2006). "World Map of the Köppen-Geiger climate classification updated". Meteorol. Z. 15: 259–263. doi:10.1127/0941-2948/2006/0130. Retrieved April 22, 2009. 
  16. ^ UCSD
  17. ^ "Monthly Averages for San Diego, CA". The Weather Channel. Retrieved April 22, 2009. 
  18. ^ "Monthly Averages for El Cajon, CA". The Weather Channel. Retrieved April 22, 2009. 
  19. ^ "NowData - NOAA Online Weather Data". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved December 15, 2011. 
  20. ^ "San Diego/Lindbergh Field CA Climate Normals 1961–1990". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved May 14, 2013. 
  21. ^ University of San Diego
  22. ^ San Diego National Wildlife Refuge Complex website
  23. ^
  24. ^ San Diego County Board of Education
  25. ^
  26. ^
  27. ^ Lewis, Connie (September 27, 2004). "Cruise Ships Face Stiffer Anti-Pollution Policies". San Diego Business Journal. Retrieved April 22, 2009. 
  28. ^ San Diego Metro Magazine
  29. ^ "San Diego Economy". 
  30. ^ Estes, Kenneth W. (1999). The Marine Officer's Guide – Sixth Edition. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. p. 176. ISBN 1-55750-567-5. 
  31. ^ "Top 100 Newspapers in the United States". Audit Bureau of Circulation. Retrieved March 13, 2010. 
  32. ^ "U-T Buys North County Times and Californian". San Diego Business Journal. September 10, 2012. Retrieved 2 July 2013. 
  33. ^ a b Horn, Jonathan (November 1, 2013). "U-T buys 8 local community newspapers". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 27 December 2013. 
  34. ^ "About CTN". San Diego County. Retrieved 2013-12-27. 
  35. ^ California Government Code § 23004
  36. ^ "About County Government". Guide to Government. League of Women Voters of California. Retrieved 26 December 2012. 
  37. ^ "Supervisor's shameless self-preservation". San Diego Union Tribune. June 30, 2011. Retrieved 28 November 2012. 
  38. ^ Orr, Katie (June 9, 2010). "Voters Approve Term Limits for Supervisors". KPBS. Retrieved 28 November 2012. 
  39. ^ Perry, Tony (November 23, 2012). "Dave Roberts brings diversity to the San Diego County supervisors". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 28 November 2012. 
  40. ^ "The County Administration Center". San Diego County webpage. Retrieved 6 January 2013. 
  41. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B02001. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-26.
  42. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q California Secretary of State. February 10, 2013 - Report of Registration. Retrieved 2013-10-31.
  43. ^ Libby, Sarah (November 5, 2012). "Where to Find Us on Election Day". Voice of San Diego. Retrieved 28 December 2012. 
  44. ^ Amid the celebrations, farewell | The San Diego Union-Tribune
  45. ^ "State Assemblymember". General Election, Tuesday, November 5, 2012. California Secretary of State. Retrieved 6 January 2013. 
  46. ^ San Diego County Proposition 8 Results by Community
  47. ^ [3]
  48. ^ "OMB Bulletin No. 13-01: Revised Delineations of Metropolitan Statistical Areas, Micropolitan Statistical Areas, and Combined Statistical Areas, and Guidance on Uses of the Delineations of These Areas". United States Office of Management and Budget. February 28, 2013. Retrieved March 20, 2013. 
  49. ^ "Table 1. Annual Estimates of the Population of Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012" (CSV). 2012 Population Estimates. United States Census Bureau, Population Division. March 2013. Retrieved March 20, 2013. 
  50. ^ "Table 2. Annual Estimates of the Population of Combined Statistical Areas: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012" (CSV). 2012 Population Estimates. United States Census Bureau, Population Division. March 2013. Retrieved March 20, 2013. 
  51. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Office of the Attorney General, Department of Justice, State of California. Table 11: Crimes – 2009. Retrieved 2013-11-14.
  52. ^ a b c United States Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation. Crime in the United States, 2012, Table 8 (California). Retrieved 2013-11-14.
  53. ^ a b U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Tables B01003 and B19025. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-26.
  54. ^ a b U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B03003. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-26.
  55. ^ a b U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B19301. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  56. ^ a b U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B19013. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  57. ^ a b U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B19113. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  58. ^ a b U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  59. ^ U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B01003. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  60. ^ a b c d e Data unavailable
  61. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". Retrieved July 9, 2013. 
  62. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Retrieved July 9, 2013. 
  63. ^ "2010 Census P.L. 94-171 Summary File Data". United States Census Bureau. 
  64. ^ San Diego County Commute

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 33°01′N 116°46′W / 33.02°N 116.77°W / 33.02; -116.77