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Township of Rochester History

Township of Rochester, PA
The Township of Rochester, located in Beaver County, approximately 35 miles northwest of the City of Pittsburgh, has a total land area of 3.95 square miles. The Township surrounds Rochester Borough, and is adjacent to, New Brighton, Freedom and East Rochester Boroughs, and the Townships of Pulaski, Daugherty and New Sewickley.

The Township was formed from New Sewickley Township by an Act of the Legislature that was approved on April 14, 1840. It borders the Ohio and Beaver rivers. All the streams passing through the Township are small, rising in the hills, and descending with a rapid fall to the rivers. Located just off of Route 65, the Township is easily accessible for automobile travel and only a 25 minute drive to the Pittsburgh International Airport.

In 1900, the Township had 337 taxable lots and 2,302 acres of cleared land. Its population by the United States Census of 1900 was 1,661. It thrived during the heyday of the steel industry, but as with most communities along the Ohio River and in Western Pennsylvania, it suffered from a loss of industry in the 1970’s and 1980’s. By the 2010 census, Rochester Township had 2,802 residents in 1,262 housing units.

Today, the Township maintains a variety of businesses, including manufacturing, warehousing, retail, and healthcare. Rochester is part of the Rochester Area School District, which includes Rochester Township, Rochester Borough, and East Rochester Township.

Operating under the First Class Township Code, the Township Board of Commissioners acts as the governing body and is comprised of five Commissioners elected at large for four year terms. To ensure continuity of Township management, a maximum of three Commissioners are up for election in any given election year.

The Commissioners approve the ordinances, policies, and directives for the Township and the Township Manager carries out the actions of the Commissioners and oversees the day to day operation of the Township organization.