Claiming Your Share of Yonkers:
The city of Yonkers has experienced a true revitalization, especially around the waterfront area. New buildings, luxury housing and plenty of shopping in the Waterfront has given Yonkers a one-up on its Westchester County sister cities. On the other hand, the Tudor-style housing and country side appeal of certain Yonker’s neighborhoods is what attracts residents to this neck of New York woods. That said, let’s figure out which part of Yonkers is your Yonkers.
Colonial Heights: Located in the northeast end of Yonkers, Colonial Heights is a desirable neighborhood with plenty of homes available for rent, but its apartment and condo selection is lacking. The single-family homes in this area tend to be a bit on the larger side (typically between 3 and 5 bedrooms with large yards), which may appeal middle to upper-middle class couples and families. Plan on hosting many a cookout or house party? There’s a ton of room in these Colonial Heights homes to set up a Slip-n-Slide or play home run derby during the Yankees 7th inning stretch. $$-$$$$
Crestwood: Nestled between Eastchester (we couldn’t make that up if we tried) and Bronxville, Crestwood is an affluent area made up of a variety of housing styles, including Tudor, Victorian and modern homes. Residents love it for its 80-plus tree-lined streets, as it looks like something out of a Norman Rockwell painting – oh wait, Crestwood was featured in a Norman Rockwell painting! For those looking for apartment lifestyle, Crestwood only offers a few options; however, if you have your eye set on a cozy, quiet, upper-class neighborhood with a small town feel, look no further. Tennis at the Women’s Club, anyone?
Waterfront: The waterfront of Yonkers was once mainly used for industrial purposes, but thanks to a Joan-Rivers-sized facelift, this part of Yonkers is now one of the most coveted for those who fancy themselves artsy and chic (You know who you are). With the Hudson River as your backdrop, living here means residing in a loft or small apartment close to shopping on Main Street. The hot nightlife spots, cultural centers, park places and trendy restaurants are scattered throughout on the streets below. The waterfront is the prime location for young, working professionals looking to move out of Manhattan to save money or for those moving to the New York area for a job. $-$$$
Lawrence Park West: Yonker’s most upscale and affluent area, LPW is where the corporate bigwigs and other Manhattan movers and shakers tend to rest their heads at night. Large, Tudor-style homes sit authoritatively upon grassy knolls; but apartment life is not completely null and void here as there are a few luxury apartments to rent. The area also features Sarah Lawrence College, making this is a good spot for families looking to relocate with aspiring teens, working professionals or wealthy couples. $$$-$$$$
Cedar Knolls: Co-op, condos, single-family homes are the bread and butter of this “working family” town. Located in the northeast corner of Yonkers, Cedar Knolls is praised by locals for its schools and its homey, small-town appeal. Ideal for those who like less hustle and bustle, there are no stores located in the neighborhood. There are some condos and apartments in the area, but the majority of living spaces here are houses that were built before the Depression and are either Tudor or Mediterranean style. Don’t get too crazy tough, as no outlandish homes are allowed in the neighborhood due to paint and architecture restrictions. For all you avid runners out there, this place has no sidewalks, so you might want to reconsider wearing that ridiculous reflective outfit (we won’t judge, we swear!). $$-$$$$
Lincoln Park: One of the most affordable areas, without compromising safety, Lincoln Park has “Middle America” written all over it. Here, Cape cod, Tudor and brick Colonial-style homes, built between the ‘20’s and ‘40’s, share the streets with co-ops and condos. Perhaps the best thing about this neighborhood is that it truly is suburbia-meets-urban terrain. It features its own shopping district (on Mclean Avenue), as well as a park for all your outdoor recreational needs. See? Urban, yet suburban! What a concept! Those looking for the best of both worlds can find it in Lincoln Park. $-$$$
Park Hill: In Park Hill, it is fairly important to love (or simply tolerate) your neighbor. The homes here are very close-set and the streets are particularly narrow. But this doesn’t mean you have to own a Smart Car and love staring into your neighbor’s windows (actually, we frown upon that last part). The beauty of Park Hill is the neighborly feel it exudes. Single-family homes here were built between 1890 and the 1930s and builders made the most of what they could with the compact swaths of land. What stands today is a hodge-podge of Shingle-style, ranch-style, Colonial, two-family dwellings, condos and newer, larger homes. Housing here often looks over the Hudson River and is perfect for those looking for a close-knit community to fall into. $-$$$
*Keep in mind that summers are hot here and winters are VERY cold, so be sure your house/apartment comes with central A/C and heat, a radiator or even a window unit.
The folks of Yonkers are very dependent on public transportation. Those relocating due to a job in the city can rely on the good ‘ol Hudson River Line (cue Billy Joel song) to get around. You can also invest in a bus pass or hop on the Water Taxi for a scenic commute. The commute, for those working in NYC, is only about 30 minutes and the rent will make you thankful for the train, even if you get the unlucky seat next to the chatty and/or crazy stranger.
Aggressive driver? Welcome home! You will fit right in here. Highway 87/New York Thruway is your best bet to motor in and around Yonkers and the rest of New York and the West Side Highway will bring you into Manhattan about 30 minutes (depending on city traffic).
Made up of tiny enclaves, Yonkers is where the city mouse comes when it is ready to give into the ways of the country mouse. It’s suburban enough to raise a family or decompress after a long day but it still maintains its edge. Trust us, moving here is no mistake. So put on some Billy Joel, pack your bags, it’s time to get bonkers in Yonkers!
-By Kera Zacuto