What is a block?

Jonathan (99jolegg) Chief Captain

Hey,

A bit of a strange question, but I was wondering, what is a block, as in the American term of distance? Its often used on American sitcoms to describe the distance of one place to another e.g. two blocks away. Is one building considered a 'block' and is each 'block' the same size? If there aren't any blocks around, what happens then? Like I said a very strange question... 🙄

Sorry for the ignorance

🍻

CRJCapt Chief Captain

Cities are segmented by streets that often, but not always, cross at right angles. This causes the city to have square or rectangular areas. We call them blocks. If someone tells you that the store you want is 3 blocks down the street on the left, you know that the next crossing street begins the next block. You can then estimate the distance. There may even be a standard block. I seem to remember about 300 feet but I'm not sure. The actual footage doesn't matter, you just count blocks. 🙂

A block is usually a little less than 1 mile square (it has to do with acreage I guess). That would make it ¼ mile per block if you are walking in a straight line, 4 blocks about a mile.
That's what I've found where I have lived, I walk for exercise and with a pedometer.

Greekman72 Chief Captain

I can only suppose that Block is using only in towns and a block must be a building area which is enclose from 4 roads...something like a big rectangle.

So if someone tells ''2 blocks ahed ''you have to pass the next two buildings area taking as a point the roads between them...

Sorry for not being very clear cause of my English.

Greekman72 Chief Captain

...and i was very late... 😉

CRJCapt Chief Captain

Block is sort of an old term and only used in cities. Here's what Wikipedia say:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/City_block

Jonathan (99jolegg) Chief Captain

Ah I see, so it is mainly used in built up city areas. Thanks 🍻

😉

Tailhook Chief Captain

99jolegg wrote:

Ah I see, so it is mainly used in built up city areas. Thanks 🍻

😉

Not exactly. You can buy a block of land in non-urban areas. Depending on the Country you live in (I'm referring to Countries where English is the main language), the size of a block differs.

In some countries you will say 'I'm buying an acre of land' - in other countries it's always 'I'm buying a block of land'.
In the latter instance, you might not even know exactly how large a 'block' is in terms of its actual size... you just know how big (large) it looks.

PanAmerican Captain

In railroading terms a block is the distance between 2 signals.
Ex:
Block
Signal----------------------------------Signal

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