Las Vegas – USA, North America
Las Vegas is the most populous city in Nevada, United States and the seat of Clark County. Las Vegas is an internationally renowned major resort city for gambling, shopping, and fine dining. The city bills itself as The Entertainment Capital of the World, and is famous for its casino resorts and associated entertainment. A growing retirement and family city, Las Vegas is the 28th-most populous city in the United States, with an estimated population by the U.S. Census Bureau of 583,756 as of 2010. The 2010 population estimate of the Las Vegas metropolitan area was 1,951,269.
Established in 1905, Las Vegas officially became a city in 1911. At the close of the 20th century, Las Vegas was the most populous American city founded in that century (a distinction held by Chicago in the 19th century). The city’s tolerance for various forms of adult entertainment earned it the title of Sin City, and this image has made Las Vegas a popular setting for films and television programs. There are numerous outdoor lighting displays on Fremont Street, as well as elsewhere in the city.
The name Las Vegas is often applied to unincorporated areas that surround the city, especially the resort areas on and near the Las Vegas Strip. The 4.2 mi (6.8 km) stretch of Las Vegas Boulevard known as the Strip is mainly in the unincorporated communities of Paradise, Winchester, and Enterprise.
Las Vegas is situated within Clark County in an arid basin on the desert floor, surrounded by dry mountains. The Spring Mountains lie to the west. Much of the landscape is rocky and dusty; the environment is dominated by desert vegetation and some wildlife, and the area is subject to torrential flash floods. The elevation is around 2,030 ft (620 m) above sea level. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 131.3 sq mi (340 km2), of which 131.2 sq mi (340 km2) is land and 0.1 sq mi (0.26 km2) (0.04%) is water.
Within the city there are many lawns, trees, and other greenery. Due to water resource issues, there is now a movement to encourage xeriscapes. Another part of the water conservation efforts include scheduled watering groups for watering residential landscaping. A U.S. Environmental Protection Agency grant in 2008 funded a program that analyzed and forecast growth and environmental impacts through the year 2019. This study resulted in an expansion of the sewage treatment capacity, which enabled rapid population growth.
Las Vegas’ climate is a subtropical desert climate (Koppen climate classification BWh), typical of the Mojave Desert in which it lies. The city enjoys abundant sunshine year-round: it has an average of about 300 sunny days per year with more than 3,800 hours of sunshine.
The summer months of June through September are very hot and mostly dry, with average daytime highs of 94 to 104 °F (34 to 40 °C) and night-time lows of 69–78 °F (21–26 °C). There are an average of 133 days per year above 90 °F (32 °C), and 72 days above 100 °F (38 °C), with most of the days in July and August exceeding that benchmark. Humidity is very low, often under 10%.
The major attractions in Las Vegas are the casinos and the hotels. There are many hotel casinos in the city’s downtown area, which was the focal point of the city’s gaming industry in its early days.
Most major downtown casinos are downtown on the Fremont Street Experience, The Stratosphere being the major exception. Fremont East, adjacent to the Fremont Street Experience, was granted variances to allow bars to be closer together, similar to the Gaslamp Quarter of San Diego. The goal being to attract a different demographic then the strip attracts.
The city is home to several museums including the Neon Museum home to many of the historical signs from the valley, The Las Vegas Museum of Organized Crime and Law Enforcement, the Las Vegas Natural History Museum, Lied Discovery Children’s Museum and the Old Las Vegas Mormon State Historic Park.
RTC Transit is a public transportation system providing bus service throughout Las Vegas, Henderson, North Las Vegas, and other suburban areas of the valley. Inter-city bus service to Las Vegas is provided by Greyhound, many charter services, including Green Tortoise, and several Chinatown bus lines. Amtrak California operates Deluxe Express Thruway Motorcoach dedicated service between the City and its passenger rail station in Bakersfield, California.