Town Vs. Township: What's The Difference?

Introduction

As we travel across different regions of the world, we come across various terms that we are not familiar with. One such term is ‘township’. It is often confused with another term ‘town’. Though both the terms sound similar, they have different meanings. In this article, we will discuss the difference between town and township.

What is a Town?

A town is a densely populated urban area that has its own local government, infrastructure, and services. The population of a town can range from a few thousand to several hundred thousand. In most countries, towns are considered administrative units, and their boundaries are defined by the local government.

Towns have a well-defined downtown area, which is the commercial center of the town. This is where most of the businesses, shops, and restaurants are located. The residential areas of the town are located on the outskirts. Towns have their own police department, fire department, and other public services.

What is a Township?

A township is a term used in North America to describe a geographic and political subdivision of a county. It is typically an unincorporated area and does not have its own local government. Township boundaries are often based on survey lines, and they can vary in size and shape.

A township is usually a rural area and may have a small population. It is often used to describe an area that is not a part of any city or town. In some cases, a township can have its own public services, such as a volunteer fire department. However, most public services are provided by the county.

Key Differences between Town and Township

1. Local Government

A town has its own local government, while a township does not. The local government of a town is responsible for providing public services and maintaining infrastructure within the town’s boundaries. A township, on the other hand, is usually governed by the county.

2. Population

Towns are usually more densely populated than townships. Towns can have a population of several thousand to hundreds of thousands, while townships usually have a smaller population.

3. Services

Towns have their own police department, fire department, and other public services, while townships usually rely on the county for these services.

4. Boundaries

The boundaries of a town are defined by the local government, while township boundaries are often based on survey lines and can vary in size and shape.

Examples of Towns and Townships

Examples of towns include New York City, London, and Tokyo. These are densely populated urban areas that have their own local government and services.

Examples of townships include Lower Merion Township in Pennsylvania and Bloomfield Township in Michigan. These are unincorporated areas that are governed by the county.

Conclusion

In summary, the key differences between town and township are the presence of a local government, population, services, and boundaries. While towns are densely populated urban areas with their own local government and services, townships are typically rural areas that do not have their own local government and rely on the county for services.

It is important to understand the difference between town and township, especially if you are planning to move to a new area. Knowing the local government structure and services available can help you make an informed decision about where to live.

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