How Big is an Acre? 25+ Real-Life Comparisons

how big is an acre

Are you curious how big is an acre? Here are interesting facts that can help visualize how big or small an acre is.

Farmers and real estate agents are very familiar with the size of an acre since a lot of their business revolves around this spacing. One acre is equivalent to 43,560 square feet, but what does that amount of space look like to us? 

What is an Acre?

An acre is a unit used to measure a land area. A standard acre is 4,840 square yards, 43,560 square feet, or just above 4,047 meters squared in the metric system. 

The word acre comes from an Old English word, aecer. In the Early Middle Ages, this word referred to the usual area farmers could plow in one day, usually with an ox. 

Fun Fact: In farming, the dimensions of an acre are 660 feet long and 66 feet wide. On the other hand, others describe an acre as one furlong (660 feet) and one chain (66 feet) in width. Thus, an acre is also one furlong and one chain.

Generally, an acre is a measurement used in the United States, though it can be referenced occasionally in a few British Commonwealth countries. 

Related: Want to learn about how much an acre is worth? Check out this post.

How Big is an Acre of Land In Different Units of Measurements

Below is a chart converting one acre  to different units of measurements:

  • 1 acre  = 43,560 square feet
  • 1 acre  = 4840 square yards
  • 1 acre  = 4,047 square meters  (4046.86 square meters )
  • 1 acre  = 0.404686 hectares
  • 1 acre  = 1/640th of a square mile

Commercial Acre vs. Residential Acre

Commercial acreage refers to a parcel of land that someone uses for business. This business can be a store, office building, warehouse, or factory. The acreage amount from a commercial standpoint will exclude any nearby alleyways, roads, sidewalks, etc.

Thus a residential acre would be the standard acreage measurement, while the commercial reading would be about 82.6 percent of that number. That means the square footage of one commercial acre is 36,000 square feet, 4000 square yards, or 3342.8 square meters. 

Acreage Converter

25+ Real-Life Comparisons

American Football Field

If you’re a regular football fan, you already know that a football field has two end zones, each totaling 10 yards. The field itself is 100 yards long, which makes a football field 120 yards total in length. 

With that, an American football field commonly measures around 57,564 square feet, about 25 percent greater than one acre. 

Tennis Court

A tennis court is quite a bit smaller than a football field or baseball field. You can fit 15.51 tennis courts or 16 tennis courts approximately into the amount of land of an acre. 

Sedans

There are a lot of different makes and models of sedans on the market right now, but your average sedan is about 13.5 feet in length and about 5 3/4 feet wide. So on average, you could fit approximately 242 sedans in one acre of land. 

That would take some excellent parking skills. However, you’ll be in the worst traffic jam traveling 0 mph.

Roman Colosseum

Located in Rome, Italy, the Roman Colosseum covers approximately six acres of land. It is 620 feet long, 512 feet wide, and 158 feet tall. If you were to pack it full of people, it could seat 50,000 of them. 

A Suburban Home

 Home designs vary quite a bit from builder to builder, but a typical American suburban home is about 2,438 square feet in size. So, you could fit 18 of them in one acre of land (ignoring city zoning requirements).

Planners situate most homes on about one acre to one half of an acre of land. You have to account for the side yard and backyard space that most homes have. 

Potatoes

Whether you fry them or bake them, you could line up 1,584 potatoes across one acre of land. So, get your ketchup ready for those French fries because you’re in for a tasty treat!

White House

The White House is located at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave in Washington, DC. There is a large fence around the grounds to provide safety to the President and his staff. The entire enclosure is on 18.7 acres of land. 

Yard Stick

How big is an acre? If you wanted to make a line of yardsticks that reached from one end of an acre of land to the other side, you would need 70-yard sticks. 

Post-it notes

Placing post-it notes on an acre of land probably seem like it would be a daunting task, and you would be right. For example, if you wanted to cover one acre of land in post-it notes, you would need 696,960 pieces of post-its. 

New York City

New York City measures approximately 300,000 acres (468.9 square miles ). This figure includes water. 

However, excluding significant bodies of water nearby and the streets and sidewalks, New York City spans over 321 square miles, equating to 205,000 acres. 

Basketball Court

An NBA basketball court must be 94 feet long and 50 feet wide, which is 4700 square feet which are 0.11 of an acre. Hence, you can fit about 11 basket courts in an acre.

Semi-Trucks

Say you wanted to purchase land and create a parking lot for a fleet of semi-trucks. You could fit about 40 different trucks into one acre of land. 

Dollar Bills

An American dollar bill measures 2.61 inches wide by 6.14 inches long. That makes it just over 16 square inches. So if you round down to the whole number of 16, you could determine that 391,419 dollar bills would fit into one acre of land. 

Soccer Field

A FIFA soccer field is between 69,000 and 86,000 square feet, which is 1.6 and 19.9 acres.

King Size Bed

A king-size bed is 42.2 square feet. Thus, about 1,032 beds can fit within the land area measurement of an acre.

Parking Spaces

Parking spaces can vary in size, depending on where you’re parking. Your average shopping mall of grocery stores strives to give customers as much space as possible while still providing ample parking. 

Let’s assume that each parking space is 350 square feet in size, which would provide you with 60 to 70 parking spots per one acre of land. 

Baseball Field

A baseball field is much larger than people realize. While the infield, the general playing area between the bases, is small, there is a large outfield to consider. Your average baseball field is 4.5 acres in size. 

Volleyball Court

 A volleyball court is 60 feet by 30 feet in size. If you factored out how many acres this would be, it is 0.2 acres. 

The Amazon Rain Forest

The Amazon Rainforest’s entire perimeter spans Colombia, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador, and Peru. It measures approximately 1,359,079,598 acres .

Statue of Liberty

The United States received the Statue of Liberty from France back in 1886. It currently sits in New York Harbor on 12 acres of land. From its base to the top of the torch, it is 305 feet tall. There are 25 windows on the crown with seven spikes. 

Mall of America

The Mall of America is in Bloomington, Minnesota. It has a total area of 4,870,000 square feet, which is 96.4 acres. You could fit seven baseball stadiums inside of it. 

The floor plan is rectangular, making it easy to measure. There are more than 530 stores inside, with three different levels of walkways. One of the sides of the mall has a fourth level in its design.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, these helpful visual comparisons gave you a better understanding of how big one acre is. For example, you should picture a football field (57,600 square feet ) containing an acre of land in the examples above. 

So, if you’re planning on purchasing a new property on acreage, reach out to one of your real estate agents due to their many years of experience. However, maybe you’ll be the one to share some fun facts about how big an acre is.

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Jonathan is a husband and father to two crazy kids. He is an engineer, real estate investor, and personal finance blogger. He owns a small real estate business that operates a couple of investment properties in his local market. He has been featured in Business Insider, USA Today, FOX Business, The Simple Dollar, The Dollar Sprout, and more! Join him on Twitter,FacebookInstagram, and Pinterest.

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