Swiss population density versus that of cities
The Swiss population has grown more or less steadily over the last decades:
With a current growth of about 1%, the Federal Statistics Office has forecast that Switzerland should have welcomed the 8 millionth inhabitant at some point this summer (jeez, I remember learning at school that Switzerland has 6.5 mio. inhabitants – you can check above where that puts me on the graph).
Now, Switzerland as a country is relatively heterogeneous, topographically speaking, with the Alps in the south. So it would be hard to spread out built-up areas evenly:
Yet, as an experiment I have taken data about some well-known, diverse, international cities and have computed the area that would be needed to house the entire Swiss population of 8 millions (give or take) at the cities’ population densities. Lo and behold, how compact, in fact, Switzerland could be (if we only wanted hard enough; or click here for a pdf in A3 format or here for a bigger graphic: