The Trolley System, Buses, and Subways: The African American Suburban Commuter (The Nepperhan Case)
By the time of the civil rights movement (1960s and early 1970s) most of Yonkers transportation arteries were constructed and most of the socioeconomic and political conversation focused on placement of housing and development as well as school zoning laws which kept the minority groups in Yonkers clustered in designated areas. However, a couple of things happened in the 1950s: The construction of the Tappan Zee Bridge in 1955 just north in Tarrytown eliminated the need for the ferry service from Yonkers to Alpine across the bridge in New Jersey, which had become the one of the primal modes of transportation during the late 1800s and a means to appreciate the enchanting nature along the Hudson River.
Figure 16: The Tappan Zee Bridge. Source: http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/construction/accelerated/wsny0602.cfm
Also in the 1950s (1952), the trolley system was replaced by the bus system currently in place.
All of these advancements in the transportation system speak of a Yonkers increasingly connected and shaped as a suburb and city by the transportation grid. While in the 1800s the Hudson River railroad was seen as an invasion against a harmony between people and nature aspired by its escapist residents and an esthetic as well as social corruption of the town, further transportation developments as well as the rapid urbanization of the center of Yonkers also distanced Yonkers from its natural charm. While River Parkways tried to mix urbanization and nature in an attempt to preserve Yonkers aesthetic representation as a garden city/suburb, their very construction on top of rivers (Bronx and Saw Mill River Parkway) and thus hidden under concrete, meant that the expression of nature in itself was limited through the transportation system. In a return to the idea of a harmonious relationship between people and nature, “daylighting”, as an attempt to remove transportation obstacles to a better expression of nature in the urban landscape completes the historical cycle of the suburbs as a return to nature.
 Yonkers Historical Society, "History of Yonkers." Accessed April 26, 2012. http://www.yonkershistory.org/hiscode.html