City Guide Rocky River OH

 Rocky River Ohio City Guide

Researching Rocky River city? Here is a complete guide with the most up to date information about city of Rocky River!

Rocky River City Limits


History: The first permanent settlers to come to this area south of Lake Erie arrived around 1810. At the time, the first agricultural communities that took root were named Riverbank, Granger City, Rockport, and Rocky River Hamlet.

By the time 1893 rolled around, the area was classified as a hamlet, which is smaller than a village. After a population increase in the following years, the area achieved village status in 1903. During this year, the village’s first mayor and city council took office.

Rocky River saw more changes in 1960, the year the village became a city and a charter adopted the mayor-council government. Named after the nearby river which was in turn named by the local Native Americans who called the area home, Rocky River became known for impressive residential homes with lakeside views.

In modern times, the city is a prosperous community home to around 20,213 residents.

Top City Highlights

  • Lakeside views
  • Easy commutes
  • Multiple city parks
  • Impressive real estate market
  • Several outdoor retreats
  • Art and entertainment
  • Great retail and entertainment
  • Good safety statistics

Location: Rocky River is situated on the south side of Lake Erie, in the western portion of Cuyahoga County. Cleveland, Ohio is less than 12 miles away, a short distance to the northeast.

Besides the city’s lakeside views, another major appeal to Rocky River is its location next to other popular Ohio cities.

Lake Erie itself makes up the city’s northern border, and the Rocky River itself winds its way along the city’s eastern section. Lakewood is on the other side of the river. Fairview Park defines the southern border. Westlake lies to the west, and Bay Village is northwest of the city.

Commutes: The city has a very convenient location that makes commuting to Cleveland, Ohio, other cities south of Lake Erie, and Cuyahoga County as a whole simple.

Rocky River is located just a 20 minute drive from downtown Cleveland by way of Interstate 90. Local roadways make accessing the Ohio Turnpike possible within 20 minutes. Additionally, Cleveland Hopkins International Airport is a 15 minute commute away from Interstate 71.

With these travel times in mind, it makes sense that the mean travel time to work for adult residents of Rocky River is 22.6 minutes.

Culture: Out of over 20,000 residents, 46.1% are male and 53.9% are female. The median age is 45.6. The average household size is 2.27, and the average family size is 3.01.

The median family income is over $90K, and 51.7% of residents hold a Bachelor’s degree or above.

As for Rocky River’s ethnic makeup, 92.6% of residents are white. 2.9% are Hispanic, 1.8% are black, 1.2% are biracial, and 0.7% are Asian. 0.07% of residents are from a different racial background.

Local Government

City Council

The city’s government is comprised of a 7 member council, a mayor, and a law director. The council includes 4 ward representatives and 3 at-large members.

Elections are held every 2 years, and meetings are held in City Hall on a regular basis.

Address: 21012 Hilliard Boulevard Rocky River, Ohio 44116
Phone: (440)-331-0600

Mayor’s Office

Rocky River’s mayor is the elected chief executive officer of the city who acts on behalf of all residents by overseeing ongoing municipality activities and the city’s general administration. The mayor serves for a 4 year term in office and is elected at-large.

Address: 21012 Hilliard Boulevard Rocky River, Ohio 44116
Phone: (440)-331-0600

Chamber of Commerce

Formed in 1922, the Rocky River Chamber of Commerce works to continuously improve the local community and serve as an advocate for businesses.

By supporting its members and civic interests with events and activities, the chamber promotes local businesses and partnerships. Today, the chamber has over 400 members.

Address: 1236 Smith Ct. Rocky River, OH 44116
Phone: (440) 331-1140


Overview: Based on academic achievement records, college prep, teacher qualifications, and other such statistics, Rocky River City School District comes in at #9 out of 608 school districts in Ohio in terms of overall excellence.

This top rated school system sees to the education of over 2,600 students across its 4 local campuses. The average student-teacher ratio is 17 to 1. Additionally, Rocky River City School District is in the top bracket of districts in terms of safety and is ranked as one of the best places to teach across the state.

The campuses that encompass this school district include Kensington Intermediate School, Goldwood Primary School, Rocky River Middle School, and Rocky River High School. All of these campuses are highly rated on for overall quality, seeing as 3/4 campuses earn A grades from the accredited website.

In addition to its public schools, Rocky River also has impressive private campuses within its borders.

Elementary Schools

Goldwood Primary School is a pre-kindergarten through 2nd grade campus that consists of around 550 students. Their student-teacher ratio is 22 to 1.

Kensington Intermediate School serves around 600 students from 3rd grade through 5th. Known for its high quality teachers, this school’s student-teacher ratio is 18 to 1.

Middle Schools

Rocky River Middle School is a 6-8 campus that proudly features a unified arts program and a modern media center. The campus has a low student-teacher ratio of 15 to 1.

Harding Middle School is just east of the Rocky River. This campus includes around 540 students from 6-8th grade.

High Schools

Rocky River High School is a member of the West Shore Conference and educates around 850 students from grades 9-12th. The student-teacher ratio is 16 to 1, and this campus has a stellar academic record.

Lakewood High School is a 9-12 campus west of Rocky River . This school has 1,600 students and a student-teacher ratio of 16 to 1.

Private Schools

Lutheran West is a Christian campus with around 420 students. The school has been in operation for over 50 years.

St. Christopher School is a K-8 campus consisting of around 400 students from kindergarten through 8th grade.

Magnificat High School makes a name for itself by being the largest all-girls Catholic 9-12 campus in Ohio.


Overview: Rocky River is routinely rated as one of the best places to live in Ohio on the whole, and specifically the city is a top place to live when it comes to lakefront views.

Out of the total number of homes and apartments coming in just below 9,000, 71.2% of housing options are owned by the residents and 28.8% of properties are rented. Meanwhile, only 7.9% of properties are vacant.

Housing options break down into 57.3% being single-family properties and 32.6% being apartment complexes. 6.5% of housing options are condominiums, and 3.7% of residences are smaller apartment buildings.

Properties with 3 bedrooms are the most common, seeing as 31.5% of houses have this number of beds. 27.2% of options are 2 bedroom properties, and 19.7% are 4 bedroom residences. Meanwhile, 13.1% of housing options have 1 bedroom. 7.0% have 5 or more bedrooms.

Housing Options

Single Family Homes

The mean sales price of a home in Rocky River sits at $259K, and average prices vary.

1-2 bedroom homes have average prices between $111K and $158K, while 3 bedroom homes are usually priced around $282K. Larger 4 bedroom properties have an average price of $387K.

New Construction

Compared with the large number of housing options, new construction makes up a small portion of residences. With that said, new construction can still be found.

From 2010 to 2014, 78 buildings were constructed with prices varying between $179K-$376K. From 2015 to 2017, 28 new homes broke ground with average costs ranging between $440K and $473K.


Apartments range from studio options to spacious 3 bedroom layouts, though the most common options have 1-2 bedrooms. The median rent sits lower than the national average at around $850 per month.

Studio apartments can be found for around $600 per month, while apartments with more bedrooms, modern amenities, or views of Lake Erie can go for over $2,200.


Condominiums in Rocky River are available for rent anywhere between $850 to $1,100 per month.

Additionally, the majority of condos can be priced anywhere from $80K to $145K, though much more expensive and luxurious options can be found for $1-2 million.

Lakefront Living

Properties along Lake Erie’s shore within Rocky River’s boundaries are the most expensive real estate in the city.

Here, the average rental price is $1,097, and the median real estate price is $420K. The housing options along the lake’s shore largely consist of 3-4 bedroom properties and 5+ bedroom family homes.

Homes for Sale

If you’re interested in buying a home in this area, we invite you to search homes for sale on our website. You are also welcome to check out the following resources listed below. If you would rather speak directly to a professional and licensed Realtor, feel free to contact Morales Team.

List of  Rocky River Real Estate Listings by Property Types

List of  Rocky River Real Estate Listings by Popular Searches

If you’re interested in selling your own property, contact Morales Team, your go-to local real estate company, by clicking the link below:

Real Estate

Overview: All in all, this real estate market is a great top long term investment opportunity.

45% of real estate is valued between $200K-$399K, while 26% are valued from $100K-$199K. At 11%, The 3rd largest chunk of the market in terms of value are properties between $400-$749K, and 3% of homes over $750K. 10% of properties are valued between $50K and $99K, and 5% of homes are worth less than $50K.

54.2% of properties were constructed from 1940 to 1969, and 20.8% of properties broke ground between 1970 and 1999. 21.5% of properties were built in 1939 or before. Only 3.4% of properties were built in 2000 or later years.

From 2008 to 2018, Rocky River enjoyed high home appreciation rates. Real estate appreciated 38.39% during this time period, which breaks down into an annual home appreciation rate of 3.30%. This places the city’s real estate appreciation in the top 20% nationwide.

Things to Do

Overview: Rocky River residents have immediate access to Lake Erie and boating, fishing, and swimming activities, but there’s more to this city than lakeside options.

The Metroparks and 10 Rocky River parks are top options for hiking through wooded areas, picniking, and more. Pluc, the Civic Center and Recreation Center are great locations to check out local events and activities.

There are multiple destinations for retail therapy, including 3 mall spaces and a number of locally owned-and-operated boutique options. The Rocky River Public Library, Cowan Pottery Museum, and River Gallery are top destinations for art and culture. Additionally, the city has a range of other alternative activities.

As for restaurants and late evening options, establishments’ menus include classic American, Thai, Italian, seafood, and more. Plus, there are more than a few great bars and taverns within the city.

Beyond Lake Erie’s shore, there are many activities and establishments waiting to be explored in Rocky River.

Retail & Entertainment

Parks & Recreation

If Lake Erie’s beautiful sights and attractions aren’t enough, there are 10 city parks within Rocky River that have a range of playground equipment, outdoor seating areas, and sports fields.

Additionally, the Recreation Center has a great swimming pool, indoor ice rink, and sports courts on top of local programs and classes.


River Square Shopping Center, Downtown River Association, and Beachcliff Market Square are all highly-rated shopping malls with great local establishments and lively atmospheres.

Additionally, there are multiple stand-alone retail options like Tarte Boutique, Lovely Paperie & Gifts, Belle Soirée Boutique, Closets Consignment Boutique, and Babycakes Children’s Boutique.

Art & Culture

The Rocky River Public Library has a rich history and has multiple programs for residents. Additionally, the building houses the Cowan Pottery Museum, an auditorium, and multiple meeting rooms for nonprofit organizations.

River Gallery is the top-rated art gallery in Rocky River found within the Old River Shopping Area. Here, unique and beautiful pieces of art are on display.

Night Life

There are multiple establishments that are open late into the evening for after-hours enjoyment.

Wine Bar Rocky River is an upscale hangout location for those who enjoy wine, and Herb’s Tavern is a local favorite. Additionally, Rocky River Brewing Co is the brewpub to visit for great drinks and dishes.


There are a wide range of restaurants within Rocky River’s boundaries that cater to all tastes.

Salmon Dave’s Pacific Grill is an upbeat, lively establishment that serves classic seafood dishes. Tartine Bistro is known for eclectic meals, and Stone Da Napoli is a highly-rated Italian restaurant. Meanwhile, Cravings Thai Cuisine and Bearden’s are other local favorites.


Overview: Rocky River, Ohio can be broken down into 13 neighborhoods, including Downtown, Hillard Acres, Southbend, Tangletown Center, Valley View, and West River to name only a few.

The most expensive Rocky Road neighborhoods are unsurprisingly found along Lake Erie’s shore. The area south of Lake Road to Detroit Road has a median real estate price of $420K, which is more costly than 96.5% of Ohio neighborhoods and 76.4% of all U.S. neighborhoods.

The second most expensive area is the eastern section of the city north of Interstate 90 and south of Detroit Road. With incredible views of the Rocky River Reservation and the Rocky River, the median real estate price here is $254K.

The area within Center Ridge Road and Wooster Road is the most affordable. This southern section of Rocky River has a median real estate price of $227K, which is less expensive than 46.2% of other Ohio real estate.

List of Rocky River Neighborhoods

Local Pros

List of Rocky River Local Pros