Vanishing Vista [Column_Tracksides]

lamy-agent_01.jpg: in the early afternoon at Lamy

According to April 30, 2018 Trains News Wire, Amtrak will eliminate the ticket agent at Lamy, New Mexico, to be effective August (as early as June, according to the Santa Fe New Mexican) 1st[1, 2]. The news seemed a surprise that even the Chicago Tribune reported the closure of the Lamy ticket window[3].

The news means that we also miss the clean and well-lighted waiting room and restroom, live information and so on, along with the checked baggage service and assistance for travelers with disabilities.

For the time being, admire the priceless service offered by the agent considered as pricey by the management: otherwise, we may lose the Chief itself[4].

All photos are taken on Sep. 13, 2015

[1] Johnston, Bob (2018) “Amtrak to eliminate 15 station agents on long-distance routes”, Trains news Wire;
[2] Apr. 29, 2018 “Lamy Amtrak Station Losing Ticket Window”, Santa Fe New Mexican;
[3] May 1, 2018 “Historic New Mexico Amtrak station closing ticket window”, Chicago Tribune;
[4] Mathews, Jim (2018) “RPA Letter in Response to Amtrak’s SW Chief Announcement” Rail Passengers Association;

lamy-agent_02.jpg: hand-written post-it tells the train #4 is 24 minutes late
lamy-agent_00.jpg: the agent contends with the Chief for the prize
lamy-agent_04.jpg: today's prizes are the two dark-blue baggage and a bike box tagged “LMY”
lamy-agent_05.jpg: immediately the Chief departs to make up for lost time
lamy-agent_03.jpg: and the luggage is off agent’s hands

2018年4月30日付Trains News Wireによれば、Amtrakはこの夏までに15の駅で駅員配置を廃止すると発表した。もちろん、いくつかの町から反対の声が早速上げられている。乗降客が減る/無人駅になる/通過駅になる/廃止になる、といった悪循環は洋の東西を問わないだろう。

残念なことに、筆者が訪れたことのあるニューメキシコ州Lamyもリストに載っている。観光地でもある州都Santa Feの最寄り駅で乗降客も年間1万人を越える(2017)らしいが、Santa Feへの個人旅行なら隣のアルバカーキで州都都心に乗り入れるRail Runnerに乗り換える方が便利。Lamyにはバスはおろかタクシーもない。



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