ur·​ban·​ize | \ ˈər-bə-ˌnīz How to pronounce urbanize (audio) \
urbanized; urbanizing

Definition of urbanize

transitive verb

1 : to cause to take on urban characteristics urbanized areas
2 : to impart an urban way of life to urbanize migrants from rural areas

Synonyms for urbanize


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Examples of urbanize in a Sentence

every September the city of Boston urbanizes a new crop of college students from small towns across the country
Recent Examples on the Web Just like any other civilization that chose to urbanize, the Romans were up against a problem: What to do with all this waste? Lina Zeldovich, Smithsonian Magazine, 15 Nov. 2021 As the area continues to grow and urbanize, the amount of impervious surfaces like streets and parking lots increases, Simonsen said. Jordan Miller, The Salt Lake Tribune, 3 July 2021 Some people didn’t want to urbanize the city, preferring that money be spent on roadways. Elizabeth Findell, WSJ, 27 Dec. 2020 But the tanker industry might also be an early illustration of how parts of the private sector stand to profit from a warming and fast-urbanizing world. Peter Schwartzstein, New York Times, 11 Jan. 2020 However, although Vietnam is urbanizing, almost two-thirds of its population still live in rural areas. Sarah Lazarus, CNN, 6 Apr. 2020 While Manhattan was urbanizing, Queens, a patchwork of commercial nurseries, was more pastoral. New York Times, 6 Mar. 2020 At the same time, the world population is growing and urbanizing rapidly. Alexis Benveniste, CNN, 28 Feb. 2020 Now, the rapidly urbanizing county is beginning a discussion that could result in a change to that agreement. Patricia Sullivan, Washington Post, 28 Dec. 2019 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'urbanize.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of urbanize

1836, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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The first known use of urbanize was in 1836

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Dictionary Entries Near urbanize



urban legend

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Cite this Entry

“Urbanize.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/urbanize. Accessed 29 Jun. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on urbanize

Britannica English: Translation of urbanize for Arabic Speakers


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