Our region has reach. Greater ROC spans nine counties, each distinct in character yet connected by culture and commerce, tradition and innovation, grit and grace.
Population: 57,535 (2022 est.) Land Area: 493 sq. mi. Largest Municipality: Batavia Population: 15,459 (2022 est.) Located between Rochester and Buffalo, Genesee County is a magnet for fun and entertainment with Six Flags Darien Lake theme park, Batavia Downs casino and racetrack, Genesee Speedway and a multitude of historical museums to explore and enjoy. Genesee Community College fosters workforce development and continuous learning. And the area is seeing considerable growth in sustainable agriculture, food processing, green energy technologies and advanced manufacturing.
Population: 61,516 (2022 est.) Land Area: 632 sq. mi. Largest Municipality: Geneseo Population: 7,748 (2022 est.) Just south of Rochester, Livingston County offers a more laid-back life. While a key draw is SUNY Geneseo, nine historic villages with revitalized downtown districts feature the charm of Main Street shopping and gathering. Outdoor discoveries abound with Letchworth State Park, Stony Brook State Park and the Genesee River running through it. Rich, fertile land and access to an unlimited supply of water make this area tops in the state for dairy, vegetable and field crop production.
Population: 752,035 (2022 est.) Land Area: 663 sq. mi. Largest Municipality: Rochester Population: 209,352 (2022 est.) Bordering the southern shore of Lake Ontario and intersected by the Genesee River and Erie Canal, Monroe County is at the heart of Greater Rochester. It’s comprised of 19 towns, 10 villages and the City of Rochester. It’s also home to numerous renowned universities, like the University of Rochester and Rochester Institute of Technology, and businesses with expertise across a range of high-tech industries. An ideal balance of arts and entertainment, adventurous recreation, culinary hotspots and friendly neighborhoods shapes this vibrant community.
Population: 112,5707 (2022 est.) Land Area: 644 sq. mi. Largest Municipality: Geneva Population: 12,503 (2022 est.) With five of the 11 Finger Lakes located here, Ontario County is a gateway to leisure and adventure. A lively tourism industry welcomes year-round activities, including hiking, biking, boating, golfing, skiing and more. This is also wine and dine country. The Canandaigua Lake Wine Trail, ROC/FLX Craft Beverage Trail and a bounty of exceptional restaurants present deliciously diverse offerings. Luxe resorts and cozy bed and breakfasts with picturesque views invite you to stay as long as you like.
Population: 39,318 (2022 est.) Land Area: 391 sq. mi. Largest Municipality: Albion Population: 6,927 (2022 est.) Historic Orleans County is nestled on the southern banks of Lake Ontario, between Rochester and Niagara Falls. It's part of the Erie Canalway National Heritage Trail with ports in Medina, Albion and Holley. Along the rural byways, produce stands, farm markets and antique shops offer a variety of special finds. With agriculture as the main industry, the county is dotted with corn, cabbage and berry fields, apple orchards and more. Boating, fishing, biking and cross-country skiing are popular activities of choice.
Population: 32,882 (2022 est.) Land Area: 324 sq. mi. Largest Municipality: Seneca Falls Population: 8,940 (2022 est.) Seneca County stretches between the longest and deepest of the Finger Lakes, Seneca and Cayuga, and connects to a 20-mile section of the Erie Canal. The hillsides are lined with acres of vineyards and dozens of wineries that have made world-class Finger Lakes wines. The region is also home to Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge and the Finger Lakes National Forest, ensuring easy access to boating, fishing, hunting, biking, camping, nature watching, cross-country skiing and other outdoor activities.
Population: 91,125 (2022 est.) Land Area: 604 sq. mi. Largest Municipality: Newark Population: 9,019 (2022 est.) Along the southern shore of Lake Ontario, Wayne County is located between the cities of Rochester and Syracuse. The Seaway Trail (a national scenic byway) and Historic Erie Canal wind through the rural area leading to varied outdoor activities like apple picking, boating, fishing, birding, hiking and biking, as well as more indulgent endeavors like antiquing, waterfront dining, and wine, spirit and cider tastings. A rich heritage is captured in its many museums and cultural attractions.
Population: 39,666 (2022 est.) Land Area: 593 sq. mi. Largest Municipality: Perry Population: 5,813 (2022 est.) Sixteen historic towns and eight charming villages, as well as abundant dairy, crop and livestock farms are the soul of Wyoming County. It’s a four-season destination for fresh-air adventure with miles of trails and rivers, plus the “Grand Canyon of the East”—Letchworth State Park. A leader in dairy and maple production, agriculture is king here. The region’s robust natural resources also support the growth of green energy technologies and advanced manufacturing.
Population: 24,451 (2022 est.) Land Area: 338 sq. mi. Largest Municipality: Penn Yan Population: 5,075 (2022 est.) Yates County, just 45 miles southeast of Rochester, is described by three words: water, wine and wilderness. It’s rural America at its best—a combination of lakes (Canandaigua, Keuka and Seneca), agritourism, recreation and arts surrounded by countryside beauty year-round. It has a large agricultural base of dairy and crop farms, grape vineyards and apple orchards, along with a thriving Mennonite population. Keuka College is also located here.
CITY OF ROCHESTER
This is the center of Greater that draws so many in and creates a ripple of inspiration outward.
Credit: Visit Rochester / John Schlia
We throw such memorable parties that they’ve practically become rites of passage. The Rochester Lilac Festival in May is the largest free festival of its kind in North America, celebrating 500+ different varieties in bloom. The Rochester International Jazz Fest in June features more than 1,500 artists, 300+ concerts and a wide variety of music styles. The Rochester Fringe Festival in September has come to be known as “The Rochester Model” by the 200+ fringe festivals around the world for its annual, free, outdoor spectacle performance by international artists.
Our potent arts scene entices curious connoisseurs of all ages. The George Eastman Museum, on the estate of the pioneer of popular photography and motion picture film, is the world’s oldest photography museum and one of the oldest film archives. The Memorial Art Gallery, known for its comprehensive, well-balanced collection and dynamic schedule of exhibitions, is a journey through more than 5,000 years of art history. The Strong National Museum of Play is more than a city block long and full of the history of toys, video games and superheroes, with a lush garden of free-flying butterflies and more.
Credit: City of Rochester Communications Bureau
These city hot spots are interesting in every sense. High Falls is a 96-foot waterfall on the Genesee River in the middle of downtown. The Falls can be seen from the rooftop of the Genesee Brew House, a century-old building that shares the history of the brewery and legendary beer. Highland Park, home to our famed Lilac Festival, is an arboretum designed by Frederick Law Olmsted with a historic castle nestled within. The Public Market brings a world of goods—from fresh foods to ethnic delicacies to specialty items—right to our cool corner of the world.
Credit: City of Rochester Communications Bureau
Unique communities make up the Greater whole. Center City is the economic hub with stunning 19th-century architecture. Quaint Cobbs Hill features home styles from the 1920s and 30s. Park Ave. touts chic local shops, restaurants and cafes. The Neighborhood of the Arts (NOTA) is where the museum and art gallery goers flock. In trendy South Wedge, diversity has infused its character and spirit. Swillburg is home to many ethnic restaurants and striking public art. The 19th Ward is the largest residential area in the city with homes ranging from cozy cottages to grand mansions.
Credit: City of Rochester Communications Bureau
We channel our progressive history as we move the future forward. Considered one of the first boomtowns in the U.S., Rochester is a thriving and diverse community known for its historical contributions. From Frederick Douglass and his North Star newspaper dedicated to the abolitionist movement to civil rights pioneer Susan B. Anthony and her pivotal role in securing women’s right to vote to visionary entrepreneur George Eastman developing the world-renowned photography giant Kodak, many influential people and prominent businesses have called the Rochester area home.
WORK IN PROGRESS
Our efforts to be Greater continue with the revitalization of downtown’s riverfront. The ROC the Riverway initiative consists of more than two dozen transformational projects to create or improve public green spaces, bike/pedestrian-focused infrastructure and water-oriented development. This also includes upgrades to facilities like Blue Cross Arena, the convention center and the Rundel Memorial Library. Aqueduct Reimagined/Riverside Promenades is the centerpiece project which will create a vibrant central gathering place and establish riverfront trail connectivity on the downtown waterfront.
There’s no shortage of opportunities in Greater Rochester to live it up—personally and professionally.
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Data sourced by C2ER as of December 2023
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