Definition of conurbation in US English:



  • An extended urban area, typically consisting of several towns merging with the suburbs of one or more cities.

    • ‘Developers are looking at big cities and Bradford is a large conurbation.’
    • ‘Greater Milan is the largest conurbation in Italy (though Rome as a city is larger).’
    • ‘Areas outside the major conurbations and the corridors linking them are still deprived of much necessary infrastructure.’
    • ‘The two reviews considered health authorities as the unit of analysis, but in cities or conurbations it makes sense to consider whole geographical areas.’
    • ‘‘They are frequently conurbations or city regions such as Amsterdam, Manchester, Singapore or Silicon Valley,’ he said.’
    • ‘The stars in the sky glowed with an ambience only seen outside the urban conurbations.’
    • ‘It is in the roads leading to the city centre and those carrying traffic past the major conurbation.’
    • ‘The almost relentless growth in property crime of recent decades has affected the whole country - rural areas, small towns, provincial cities, and major conurbations.’
    • ‘This established a two-tier system of thirty-nine counties and six metropolitan counties for the major conurbations outside London.’
    • ‘Manchester is a major city at the heart of a large urban conurbation.’
    • ‘Why are the turnover rates in these three conurbations higher in inner city areas and in teaching trusts and more acute in larger cities, particularly London?’
    • ‘Great cities and conurbations are developed by visionaries who instill pride and optimism in their fellow citizens.’
    • ‘The area adjoins the Dublin conurbation, and is a designated green belt amenity and agricultural resource base.’
    • ‘‘When Swindon was growing as a new town thousands of young couples were settled in areas to the west and east of the conurbation,’ said Coun Perkins.’
    • ‘We can learn a great deal from the experience of other major conurbations across Europe.’
    • ‘It states that in Africa, Asia and Latin America there are 600 million people living in squatter settlements around conurbations that lack any sanitation infrastructure.’
    • ‘And we will need a pilot somewhere in the UK - probably in a major conurbation or region of the country.’
    • ‘It's likely to be close to a major conurbation with good road and rail links.’
    • ‘Each category of settlement - the hamlets, the villages, the towns, the cities, the conurbations - appears to have its own characteristic scale of distance.’
    • ‘We were promised this super hospital, not just for the city, but for the whole conurbation, because that is what we need.’
    urban area, municipality, borough, township, settlement
    View synonyms


Early 20th century: from con- ‘together’ + Latin urbs, urb- ‘city’ + -ation.