Corn Hill

About Corn Hill

This Victorian neighborhood on the river’s western edge is the original residential center of Rochester. One of the earliest urban restoration success stories in the country, Corn Hill’s spectacular Victorian houses were brought back from the brink of extinction during the 1960s by a pioneering group of city dwellers. Their success is easily measured by anyone walking these shady streets with their wrought-iron fences and beautifully restored homes. Furthermore, the neighborhood’s second rejuvenation in the 1980s resulted in an extensive new townhome development. The Corn Hill landing project also provided new waterfront apartments and restaurants to the neighborhood.


The architecture and streets of Corn Hill evoke memories of the first truly prosperous neighborhood in Rochester, as many buildings date back to the 1850s and earlier. Home to many of the City’s early business and political leaders, Corn Hill’s Exchange Boulevard once contained rows of elaborate mansions whose grounds rolled down to the banks of the Genesee. Unfortunately, they were torn down after falling into disrepair, leaving acres of open space along the river. The remaining homes are testaments to the magnitude of this loss.

Drawn by the wonderful architecture and low prices, a few hardy persons began buying the often vacant and rundown properties in the late 1960s. What followed was a true urban renaissance as ramshackle mansions and dilapidated painted ladies were brought back to their original splendor.

As Corn Hill was revitalized, area developers turned their interest to the large vacant area near the river and eventually built hundreds of upscale townhouses and a retail district, effectively doubling the population of this unique neighborhood.


The riverbank is being restored to extend the Genesee River Trail between downtown and Genesee Valley Park. This would improve flood protection as well as public access to the river.