Week of January 11–17, 2019
Riders this past week: 33,523
Rider miles this past week: 88,312
DOWN IN THE TUBE
Golden Globe–winning director Alfonso Cuarón (Roma) and director of Golden Globe–winning Bohemian Rhapsody star Rami Malek were seen on the Hamptons Subway platform on Tuesday in Southampton discussing a future project they might do together, according to our spotter. Lindsay Lohan was seen with her father traveling from Quogue to Westhampton on Wednesday.
The 12-foot steel wall boxing off the entrance to the Hamptons Subway at street level in Westhampton Beach may have to be re-done, but there are currently no funds left to re-do it. Built at the executive order of President Trump to stop immigrants from coming to Westhampton Beach by subway—steel walls will follow at the entrances to the other 14 stops—it was supposed to be built at street level only at the top of the up escalator, but instead it blocks both the up and down escalators. The escalators thus cannot be used for either coming or going. As cost overruns needed to block both escalators have wiped out all the funding for that location, the President has so far not issued more funding, which means the extra wall stays in place for now. To access the Westhampton Beach platform, either up or down, use the stairs.
ADDITION TO OUR BUILDING
Hamptons Subway desperately needs an addition to our building on Ponquogue Avenue in Hampton Bays, but the project is being held up by the Southampton Planning Board and the Hampton Bays Historical Society.
Our four-story building was originally constructed in 1936, well before zoning. Designed by Hitler’s architect Albert Speer, it is a historic structure, the only example of monumental Third Reich architecture ever built in America. (America and Germany were friends in 1936). The Planning Board’s position is that although the original building before zoning is grandfathered in, no extensions can be made since the grandfathering. The Historical Society’s objections are about the historical protections offered this building, but not any future extension. The addition is needed to house the TSA security officials who screen everyone who uses the subway (without their knowledge.) Currently, they operate out of a broom closet. They also need the extra space for the holding cells.
SPIKE IN USAGE
The recent arrival of cold weather has resulted in an increase in the daily number of people using the system. Some people are now riding the subway because it’s a thing to do, a tourist attraction that is warm this time of year. We expect the ridership will decline come springtime as people stop using it just to say warm.
NEW ARRANGEMENT WITH WALMART
To fight Amazon, Walmart has reached out to Hamptons Subway for a partnership, and we have been happy to oblige. Beginning on January 15, you can order by phone what you need from the closest Walmart, the one in Riverhead, and then go down to your nearest subway stop and pick up your purchase where Walmart will set it on the platform for you to take home. All you have to do is let them know which stop you will be picking up at and when. An email will alert you when it arrives to go down and pick it up. Much better than having to drive all the way to Riverhead. (Our cut of the transaction is your subway card swipe to let you through the turnstiles to get it).
COMMISSIONER ASPINALL’S MESSAGE
My staff goes all out to find new ways to make you happy using Hamptons Subway. Kudos to all of them.