Week of December 12–18, 2014
Riders this past week: 13,812
Rider miles this past week: 97,212
DOWN IN THE TUBE
Jon Stewart, carrying a folding director’s chair, took the subway from Southampton to Shinnecock on Friday afternoon. Richard White Jr. was seen on the subway at Montauk heading for Hither Hills.
NORTH FORK SUBWAY LINE?
Last week in this newsletter, we asked Aquebogue, Cutchogue, Laurel, Mattituck, Southold, Greenport, East Marion, Peconic, Jamesport and Orient to each pony up $5 million to help finance a new branch of the Hamptons Subway on the North Fork by paying for each of their particular stations. (Platform, ticket booth, turnstiles, escalators). If at least four of those towns did that, we’d build the tunnel, and also kick in with a stop for Riverhead. Yesterday, we received an anonymous check for $5 million with the word “Jamesport” in the lower left-hand corner. We are happy to have the money for Jamesport. That means there are three more, or as many as nine more, to go. Make checks out to “Hamptons Subway” and send them to Box 90909, Hampton Bays, New York. If we get the three others, the North Fork branch is a go. If we get two more or fewer, the money, now in our general funds account, will go to other good uses.
TEMPORARY GATE PLAN
Hamptons Subway has installed a new collapsible metal gate at our Pantigo Station to help keep people from falling off the platform in front of the arriving train (not that anybody has done that, recently, anyway.), The gate is a bit like a folding children’s gate, and in its “down” position it sits on the platform in a narrow trench, so people won’t trip over it, three feet from the edge of the platform and parallel to platform’s edge for the full length of the station. It remains in the “down” position while the train is in the station, but after the doors close and the train begins to leave, it rises up to its full five-foot height. People would have to jump over it to get onto the tracks and thus it protects people from doing that. It goes back down after a train arrives in the station.
So far, we’ve been experimenting with this late at night, and it seems to work pretty good. We did have one occasion when a workman got caught on the ledge between the train and the gate, and he got a few bruises when the train left, but we’re working on not having that happen. Maybe we use sirens and flashing lights when the gate is on the move.
THIRD RAIL WORKOUT
We welcome our new tenant, Third Rail Workout, which has rented space on the tracks at Southampton late at night to hold its workouts when the trains are not running. The workouts focus on coordination, balance, stamina and quickness, using the fear of touching or falling onto the third rail as a whip to motivate the participants and help get them into shape.
FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS
All the subway tunnels on the Hamptons Subway are decorated with bright Christmas lights and moving decorations of angels, Santa, the flying reindeer and other icons of the Christmas spirit. Take a ride on the subway and see for yourself. From now to Christmas, the trains will be traveling at just 8 miles an hour between stations instead of the usual 40 miles an hour so everyone can best enjoy these displays. Plan accordingly.
COMMISSIONER ASPINALL’S MESSAGE
This is a happy time of the year, not only for the riders but our employees. All the uniformed staff will wear elf hats for the duration.