Los Angeles County, California facts for kids
Quick facts for kids
Los Angeles County
|County of Los Angeles|
Location in the state of California
|Metro area||Greater Los Angeles|
|Formed||February 18, 1850|
|County seat||Los Angeles|
|Largest city||Los Angeles|
|• Body||Board of Supervisors|
|• Total||4,751 sq mi (12,310 km2)|
|• Land||4,058 sq mi (10,510 km2)|
|• Water||693 sq mi (1,790 km2)|
|Highest elevation||10,068 ft (3,069 m)|
|Lowest elevation||0 ft (0 m)|
|• Density||2,468/sq mi (953/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−8 (Pacific Time Zone)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−7 (Pacific Daylight Time)|
90xxx–918xx, 92397, 92821, 92823, 93243, 935xx
|Area codes||213/323, 310/424, 442/760, 562, 626, 657/714, 661, 747/818, 840/909|
|GNIS feature ID||277283|
|GDP||$727 billion · 1st|
Los Angeles County, officially the County of Los Angeles, and sometimes abbreviated as L.A. County, is the most populous county in the United States and in the U.S. state of California, with more than ten million inhabitants as of the 2020 census. It is the most populous non–state-level government entity in the United States. Its population is greater than that of 40 individual U.S. states. Los Angeles County has the 3rd largest metropolitan area economy in the world, with a nominal GDP of more than $1.0 trillion. At 4,083 square miles (10,570 km2) and with 88 incorporated cities and many unincorporated areas, it is home to more than one-quarter of California residents and is one of the most ethnically diverse counties in the United States.
- Sites of interest
- See also: History of Los Angeles
Los Angeles County is one of the original counties of California, created at the time of statehood in 1850. The county originally included parts of what are now Kern, San Bernardino, Riverside and Orange counties. As the population increased, sections were split off to organize San Bernardino County in 1853, Kern County in 1866, and Orange County in 1889.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has an area of 4,751 square miles (12,310 km2), of which 4,058 square miles (10,510 km2) is land and 693 square miles (1,790 km2) (15%) is water. Los Angeles County borders 70 miles (110 km) of coast on the Pacific Ocean and encompasses mountain ranges, valleys, forests, islands, lakes, rivers, and desert. The Los Angeles River, Rio Hondo, the San Gabriel River and the Santa Clara River flow in Los Angeles County, while the primary mountain ranges are the Santa Monica Mountains and the San Gabriel Mountains. The western extent of the Mojave Desert begins in the Antelope Valley, in the northeastern part of the county.
Most of the population of Los Angeles County is located in the south and southwest, with major population centers in the Los Angeles Basin, San Fernando Valley and San Gabriel Valley. Other population centers are found in the Santa Clarita Valley, Pomona Valley, Crescenta Valley and Antelope Valley.
The county is divided west-to-east by the San Gabriel Mountains, which are part of the Transverse Ranges of southern California, and are contained mostly within the Angeles National Forest. Most of the county's highest peaks are in the San Gabriel Mountains, including Mount San Antonio 10,068 feet (3,069 m)) at the Los Angeles-San Bernardino county lines, Mount Baden-Powell 9,399 feet (2,865 m), Mount Burnham 8,997 feet (2,742 m) and Mount Wilson 5,710 feet (1,740 m). Several lower mountains are in the northern, western, and southwestern parts of the county, including the San Emigdio Mountains, the southernmost part of Tehachapi Mountains and the Sierra Pelona Mountains.
Lakes and reservoirs
Major divisions of the county
- East: Eastside, San Gabriel Valley, portions of the Pomona Valley
- West: Westside, Beach Cities
- South: South Bay, South Los Angeles, Palos Verdes Peninsula, Gateway Cities, Los Angeles Harbor Region
- North: San Fernando Valley, Crescenta Valley, portions of the Conejo Valley, portions of the Antelope Valley and Santa Clarita Valley
- Central: Downtown Los Angeles, Mid-Wilshire, Northeast Los Angeles
National protected areas
- Angeles National Forest (part)
- Los Padres National Forest (part)
- Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area (part)
|U.S. Decennial Census
1990–2000 2010 2020
|Race / Ethnicity||Pop 2010||Pop 2020||% 2010||% 2020|
|White alone (NH)||2,728,321||2,563,609||27.79%||25.60%|
|Black or African American alone (NH)||815,086||760,689||8.30%||7.60%|
|Native American or Alaska Native alone (NH)||18,886||18,453||0.19%||0.18%|
|Asian alone (NH)||1,325,671||1,474,237||13.50%||14.72%|
|Pacific Islander alone (NH)||22,464||20,522||0.23%||0.20%|
|Some Other Race alone (NH)||25,367||58,683||0.26%||0.59%|
|Mixed Race/Multi-Racial (NH)||194,921||313,053||1.99%||3.13%|
|Hispanic or Latino (any race)||4,687,889||4,804,763||47.74%||47.98%|
Note: the US Census treats Hispanic/Latino as an ethnic category. This table excludes Latinos from the racial categories and assigns them to a separate category. Hispanics/Latinos can be of any race.
In 2019, the median household income in the county was $72,797.
Los Angeles County had a population of 9,818,605 in the 2010 United States Census. This includes a natural increase since the last census of 583,364 people (i.e., 1,152,564 births minus 569,200 deaths) and a decrease due to net migration of 361,895 people. Immigration resulted in a net increase of 293,433 people, and migration from within the United States resulted in a net decrease of 655,328 people.
The racial makeup of Los Angeles County was 4,936,599 (50%) White, 1,346,865 (13.7%) Asian, 856,874 (9%) African American, 72,828 (0.7%) Native American, 26,094 (0.3%) Pacific Islander, 2,140,632 (21.8%) from other races, and 438,713 (4.5%) from two or more races.
Non-Hispanic whites numbered 2,728,321, or 28% of the population. Hispanic or Latino residents of any race numbered 4,687,889 (48%); 36% of Los Angeles County's population was of Mexican ancestry, 3.7% Salvadoran, and 2.2% Guatemalan heritage.
The county has a large population of Asian Americans, being home to the largest numbers of Burmese, Cambodian, Chinese, Filipino, Indonesian, Korean, Sri Lankan, Taiwanese, and Thai outside their respective countries. The largest Asian groups in Los Angeles County are 4.0% Chinese, 3.3% Filipino, 2.2% Korean, 1.0% Japanese, 0.9% Vietnamese, 0.8% Indian, and 0.3% Cambodian.
Racial and Ethnic Composition since 1960
|Hispanic or Latino||48.0%||47.7%||44.5%||37.8%||27.6%||18.3%||-|
|Black or African American (non-Hispanic)||7.6%||8.3%||9.7%||11.1%||12.6%||10.8%||7.6%|
|Native American (non-Hispanic)||0.2%||0.2%||0.8%||0.5%||-||-||0.1%|
|Pacific Islander (non-Hispanic)||0.2%||0.2%||%||-||-||-||-|
|Mixed race (non-Hispanic)||3.0%||2.0%||%||-||-||-||-|
Race and ancestry
|Population, race, and income (2011)|
|Black or African American||844,048||8.6%|
|American Indian or Alaska Native||49,329||0.5%|
|Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander||26,310||0.3%|
|Some other race||2,064,759||21.1%|
|Two or more races||329,152||3.4%|
|Hispanic or Latino (of any race)||4,644,328||47.5%|
|Per capita income||$27,954|
|Median household income||$56,266|
|Median family income||$62,595|
The racial makeup of the county is 48.7% White, 11.0% African American, 0.8% Native American, 10.0% Asian, 0.3% Pacific Islander, 23.5% from other races, and 4.9% from two or more races. 44.6% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race. The largest European-American ancestry groups are German (6%), Irish (5%), English (4%) and Italian (3%). 45.9% of the population reported speaking only English at home; 37.9% spoke Spanish, 2.22% Tagalog, 2.0% Chinese, 1.9% Korean, 1.87% Armenian, 0.5% Arabic, and 0.2% Hindi.
The county has the largest Native American population of any county in the nation: according to the 2000 census, it has more than 153,550 people of indigenous descent, and most are from Latin America.
As estimated by the Public Policy Institute of California in 2008, Los Angeles County is home to more than one-third of California's undocumented immigrants, who make up more than ten percent of the population.
Los Angeles County is home to the largest Armenian population outside of Armenia.
Los Angeles County contains the largest Iranian population outside of Iran of any other county or county equivalent globally.
At the 2000 census, there were 9,519,338 people, 3,133,774 households, and 2,137,233 families in the county. The population density was 2,344 people per square mile (905/km2). There were 3,270,909 housing units at an average density of 806 per square mile (311/km2).
Of the 3,133,774 households 37% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48% were married couples living together, 15% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32% were non-families. 25% of households were one person and 7% were one person aged 65 or older. The average household size was 2.98 and the average family size was 3.61.
The age distribution was 28% under the age of 18, 10% from 18 to 24, 33% from 25 to 44, 19% from 45 to 64, and 10% 65 or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females, there were 97.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.0 males.
The median personal earnings for all workers 16 and older in Los Angeles County are $30,654, slightly below the US median; earnings, however vary widely by neighborhood, race and ethnicity, and gender. The median household income was $42,189 and the median family income was $46,452. Males had a median income of $36,299 versus $30,981 for females. The per capita income for the county was $20,683. There are 14.4% of families living below the poverty line and 17.9% of the population, including 24.2% of under 18 and 10.5% of those over 64. Los Angeles County has the highest number of millionaires of any county in the nation, totaling 261,081 households as of 2007.
The homeownership rate is 47.9%, and the median value for houses is $409,300. 42.2% of housing units are in multi-unit structures. Los Angeles County has the largest number of homeless people, with "48,000 people living on the streets, including 6,000 veterans," in 2010. As of 2017[update] the number of homeless people in the county increased to nearly 58,000.
In 2015, there were over two thousand Christian churches, the majority of which are Catholic. Roman Catholic adherents number close to 40% of the population. There were 202 Jewish synagogues, 145 Buddhist temples, 38 Muslim mosques, 44 Baháʼí Faith worship centers, 37 Hindu temples, 28 Tenrikyo churches and fellowships, 16 Shinto worship centers, and 14 Sikh gurdwaras in the county. The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles has approximately 5 million members and is the largest diocese in the United States. In 2014, the county had 3,275 religious organizations, the most out of all US counties.
Sites of interest
The county's most visited park is Griffith Park, owned by the city of Los Angeles. The county is also known for the annual Rose Parade in Pasadena, the annual Los Angeles County Fair in Pomona, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Los Angeles Zoo, the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, the La Brea Tar Pits, the Arboretum of Los Angeles, and two horse racetracks and two car racetracks (Pomona Raceway and Irwindale Speedway), also the RMS Queen Mary located in Long Beach, and the Long Beach Grand Prix, and miles of beaches—from Zuma to Cabrillo.
Venice Beach is a popular attraction where its Muscle Beach used to find throngs of tourists admiring "hardbodies". Today, it is more arts-centered. Santa Monica's pier is a well known tourist spot, famous for its ferris wheel and bumper car rides, which were featured in the introductory segment of the television sitcom Three's Company. Further north in Pacific Palisades one finds the beaches used in the television series Baywatch. The fabled Malibu, home of many a film or television star, lies west of it.
In the mountain, canyon, and desert areas one may find Vasquez Rocks Natural Area Park, where many old Westerns were filmed. Mount Wilson Observatory in the San Gabriel Mountains is open for the public to view astronomical stars from its telescope, now computer-assisted. Many county residents find relaxation in water skiing and swimming at Castaic Lake Recreation Area – the county's largest park by area – as well as enjoying natural surroundings and starry nights at Saddleback Butte State Park in the eastern Antelope Valley – California State Parks' largest in area within the county. The California Poppy Reserve is located in the western Antelope Valley and shows off the State's flower in great quantity on its rolling hills every spring.
- Battleship USS Iowa, Los Angeles Waterfront in San Pedro
- SS Lane Victory, Los Angeles Waterfront in San Pedro, just south of the USS Iowa
- California African American Museum
- California Science Center, Los Angeles (formerly the Museum of Science and Industry)
- Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum
- Hammer Museum
- Huntington Library, San Marino
- Long Beach Museum of Art in the historic Elizabeth Milbank Anderson residence
- Los Angeles Children's Museum
- Los Angeles County Fire Museum, in Bellflower
- Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Mid-City, Los Angeles
- Museum of Contemporary Art, Downtown Los Angeles (founded in 1950); The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA, Downtown Los Angeles (founded in 1980)
- Museum of Jurassic Technology, Culver City
- Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach
- Museum of Neon Art
- Museum of the American West (Gene Autry Museum), in Griffith Park
- Museum of Tolerance
- Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
- Pasadena Museum of California Art, in Pasadena
- J. Paul Getty Center, Brentwood (Ancient Roman, Greek, and European Renaissance Art)
- J. Paul Getty Villa, Pacific Palisades, Getty's original house
- George C. Page Museum at La Brea Tar Pits
- Santa Monica Museum of Art, Santa Monica (Contemporary art)
- Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena (19th- and early 20th-century art)
- Skirball Cultural Center, Los Angeles
- Southwest Museum
- California Plaza, which comprises:
- Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts
- The Forum
- Disney Concert Hall
- Greek Theatre
- Pantages Theatre
- Hollywood Bowl
- Hollywood Palladium
- House of Blues Sunset Strip
- John Anson Ford Amphitheatre
- The Orpheum Theatre
- The Roxy Theatre
- Royce Hall (UCLA)
- The Music Box
- El Rey Theatre
- Staples Center
- The Troubadour
- The Wiltern
- Whisky a Go Go
- Gibson Amphitheatre
- Universal Studios Hollywood
- Raging Waters
- Six Flags Magic Mountain
- Six Flags Hurricane Harbor
- Pacific Park
- Ridge Route
- Angeles National Forest
- Mount Wilson Observatory
- Malibu Creek State Park
- Vasquez Rocks Natural Area Park
- Plant 42's Blackbird Airpark and Heritage Airpark
- Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve
- Cortes Bank
- Santa Catalina Island
- Mojave Desert
- Saddleback Butte State Park
- Antelope Valley Indian Museum State Historic Park
- Arthur B. Ripley Desert Woodland State Park
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), located in the Westchester district, is the primary commercial airport for commercial airlines in the county and the Greater Los Angeles Area. LAX is operated by Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA), an agency of the City of Los Angeles.
Other important commercial airports in Los Angeles County include:
- Long Beach Municipal Airport operated by the City of Long Beach.
- Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, operated by the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority.
The following general aviation airports also are located in Los Angeles County:
- County operated airports (Department of Public Works, Aviation Division)
- City operated airports
- Van Nuys Airport in Van Nuys, also operated by LAWA. Van Nuys Airport sees significant executive jet air traffic.
- LA/Palmdale Regional Airport in Palmdale. The airport is a separate facility on the grounds of Air Force Plant 42.
- Santa Monica Airport in Santa Monica, which has major executive jet traffic.
- Hawthorne Municipal Airport, also known as Jack Northrop Field, in Hawthorne.
- Zamperini Field in Torrance.
The U.S. Air Force operates three airports in Los Angeles County:
- Portions of Edwards Air Force Base, located at the northern edge of the county.
- Air Force Plant 42 in Palmdale, sharing runways with LA/Palmdale Regional.
- The non-flying Los Angeles Air Force Base in El Segundo.
Los Angeles is a major freight-railroad transportation center, largely due to the large volumes of freight moving in and out of the county's sea port facilities. The ports are connected to the downtown rail yards and to the main lines of Union Pacific and Burlington Northern Santa Fe headed east via a grade-separated, freight rail corridor known as the Alameda Corridor.
Passenger rail service is provided in the county by Amtrak, Los Angeles Metro Rail and Metrolink.
Amtrak has the following intercity Amtrak service at Union Station in the city of Los Angeles:
- The Pacific Surfliner to Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, and San Diego.
- The Coast Starlight to San Francisco Bay Area, Portland and Seattle.
- The Southwest Chief to Albuquerque, Kansas City and Chicago.
- The Sunset Limited to Tucson, Houston and New Orleans.
Union Station is also the primary hub for Metrolink commuter rail, which serves much of the Greater Los Angeles Area.
Light rail, subway (heavy rail), and long-distance bus service are all provided by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro).
The county's two main seaports are the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach. Together they handle over a quarter of all container traffic entering the United States, making the complex the largest and most important port in the country, and the third-largest port in the world by shipping volume.
The Port of Los Angeles is the largest cruise ship center on the West Coast, handling more than 1 million passengers annually.
The Port of Long Beach is home to the Sea Launch program, which uses a floating launch platform to insert payloads into orbits that would be difficult to attain from existing land-based launch sites.
There are 88 incorporated cities in Los Angeles County. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the most populous are:
Census designated places
- Agua Dulce
- Alondra Park
- Avocado Heights
- Charter Oak
- Del Aire
- Desert View Highlands
- East Los Angeles
- East Pasadena
- East Rancho Dominguez
- East San Gabriel
- East Whittier
- Elizabeth Lake
- Green Valley
- Hacienda Heights
- Hasley Canyon
- La Crescenta-Montrose
- Ladera Heights
- Lake Hughes
- Lake Los Angeles
- Leona Valley
- Marina del Rey
- Mayflower Village
- North El Monte
- Quartz Hill
- Rose Hills
- Rowland Heights
- San Pasqual
- South Monrovia Island
- South San Gabriel
- South San Jose Hills
- South Whittier
- Stevenson Ranch
- Sun Village
- Val Verde
- View Park-Windsor Hills
- Walnut Park
- West Athens
- West Carson
- West Rancho Dominguez
- West Puente Valley
- West Whittier-Los Nietos
- See: Los Angeles Almanac MAP: Unincorporated Areas and Communities of Los Angeles County
- See also: List of districts and neighborhoods of Los Angeles
The population ranking of the following table is based on the 2010 census of Los Angeles County.
† county seat
|Rank||City/Town/etc.||Municipal type||Population (2010 Census)|
|1||† Los Angeles||City||3,792,621|
|10||East Los Angeles||CDP||126,496|
|49||Rancho Palos Verdes||City||41,643|
|68||West Whittier-Los Nietos||CDP||25,540|
|74||West Puente Valley||CDP||22,636|
|77||South San Jose Hills||CDP||20,551|
|80||La Cañada Flintridge||City||20,246|
|81||South El Monte||City||20,116|
|88||Santa Fe Springs||City||16,223|
|92||East Rancho Dominguez||CDP||15,135|
|93||East San Gabriel||CDP||14,874|
|95||Palos Verdes Estates||City||13,438|
|99||Lake Los Angeles||CDP||12,328|
|101||View Park-Windsor Hills||CDP||11,075|
|107||East Whittier (formerly East La Mirada until 2012)||CDP||9,757|
|109||Marina del Rey||CDP||8,866|
|114||South San Gabriel||CDP||8,070|
|115||Rolling Hills Estates||City||8,067|
|117||South Monrovia Island||CDP||6,777|
|120||West Rancho Dominguez||CDP||5,669|
|122||La Habra Heights||City||5,325|
|124||North El Monte||CDP||3,723|
|128||Desert View Highlands||CDP||2,360|
|138||Santa Susana (mostly in Ventura County)||CDP||1,037|
- See also: Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce
Los Angeles County is commonly associated with the entertainment and digital media industry; all five major film studios—Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros., Universal Pictures, and Walt Disney Studios—are located within the county. Numerous other major industries also define the economy of Los Angeles County, including international trade supported by the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach, music recording and production, aerospace and defense, fashion, and professional services such as law, medicine, engineering and design services, financial services. High-tech sector employment within Los Angeles County is 368,500 workers, and manufacturing employment within Los Angeles County is 365,000 workers.
The following major companies have headquarters in Los Angeles County:
The Los Angeles County Office of Education provides a supporting role for school districts in the area. The county office also operates two magnet schools, the International Polytechnic High School and Los Angeles County High School for the Arts. There are a number of private schools in the county, most notably those operated by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese.
- Antelope Valley College, Lancaster
- Art Center College of Design, Pasadena
- The Art Institute of California – Los Angeles (AICALA), Santa Monica
- Azusa Pacific University, Azusa
- Biola University, La Mirada
- California Institute of the Arts, Santa Clarita
- Cerritos College, Norwalk
- Citrus College, Glendora
- Claremont Colleges, Claremont
- Claremont School of Theology, Claremont
- College of the Canyons, Santa Clarita
- DeVry University, Long Beach and West Hills (Los Angeles)
- East Los Angeles College, Monterey Park
- El Camino College, Torrance
- Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena
- Glendale Community College, Glendale
- Hebrew Union College, Los Angeles
- ITT Technical Institute, Culver City, San Dimas, Sylmar (Los Angeles), Torrance, and West Covina
- Life Pacific College, San Dimas
- Long Beach City College, Long Beach
- Los Angeles City College (LACC), Los Angeles
- Los Angeles Harbor College, Los Angeles
- Los Angeles Mission College, Sylmar (Los Angeles)
- Los Angeles Music Academy College of Music, Pasadena
- Los Angeles Pierce College (Pierce), Woodland Hills (Los Angeles)
- Los Angeles Southwest College, Los Angeles
- Los Angeles Trade Technical College (LATTC), Los Angeles
- Los Angeles Valley College, Valley Glen (Los Angeles)
- The Master's University, Santa Clarita
- Mount St. Mary's College, Los Angeles
- Mt. San Antonio College, Walnut
- Occidental College (Oxy), Eagle Rock (Los Angeles)
- Otis College of Art and Design, Westchester (Los Angeles)
- Pacific Oaks College, Pasadena
- Pasadena City College, Pasadena
- Pepperdine University, Malibu
- Rio Hondo College, Whittier
- Santa Monica College (SMC), Santa Monica
- West Los Angeles College, Culver City
- Whittier College, Whittier
- Wyoming Technical Institute (WyoTech), Long Beach
- Abraham Lincoln University (ALU), Los Angeles
- Alliant International University (AIU), Alhambra
- American Jewish University (AJULA), Los Angeles
- Azusa Pacific University, Azusa
- Biola University, La Mirada
- California Institute of Technology (Caltech), Pasadena
- California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Cal Poly Pomona), Pomona
- California State University, Dominguez Hills (CSUDH), Carson
- California State University, Long Beach (CSULB), Long Beach
- California State University, Los Angeles (CSULA), Los Angeles
- California State University, Northridge (CSUN), Northridge (Los Angeles)
- Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science (Los Angeles)
- Claremont Graduate University (CGU), Claremont
- Loyola Marymount University (LMU), Westchester (Los Angeles)
- National University, Los Angeles and Woodland Hills
- Pepperdine University, Malibu
- Southern California University of Health Sciences, Whittier
- Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc), Los Angeles
- Southwestern University School of Law, Los Angeles
- University of Antelope Valley (UAV), Lancaster
- University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Westwood (Los Angeles)
- University of La Verne, La Verne
- University of Southern California (USC), Los Angeles
- University of the West (UWest), Rosemead
- Western University of Health Sciences (WesternU), Pomona
- Woodbury University, Burbank
Los Angeles County, California Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.