Ducci Electrical’s Metro North Work Exemplifies a Substantial History in Railroad Construction

Ducci Electrical’s Metro North Work Exemplifies a Substantial History in Railroad Construction

October 28, 2021 0 By Stephen Callahan

Although Ducci Electrical Contractors first established itself as a traditional electrical building subcontractor, it has emerged as one of the most trusted companies of its kind in the railroad sector. Over the last couple of decades, it has completed a broad range of catenary, signalization, and bridge replacement projects throughout the Northeast United States for railway leaders such as Metro North, Amtrak, and Shoreline East.

A Tradition of Work in the Railroad Industry

Family-owned and operated for more than 70 years, Ducci Electrical Contractors concentrated on traditional building and highway infrastructure electrical projects for the bulk of its history. Around the turn of the century, however, the company began to expand into highly specialized work within the railroad industry.

In relatively short order, this type of work became a primary focus for Ducci Electrical. Now, railroad projects account for roughly half of its business revenue over the course of an average year.

Ducci Electrical’s diverse portfolio of railway projects includes the installation and replacement of auto-tension catenary systems as well as cable plowing and AC and DC substations. It is also adept at fiber-optic communications installation and integration, interlock construction, and all facets of the modern train signalization systems. In addition to performing all electrical work, Ducci Electrical handles the development of any associated support infrastructure from drilled shaft foundations to structural steel framework.

 

Ducci Electrical Contractors Showcases Railroad Construction Proficiency

Ducci Electrical’s current work with Metro-North Railroad demonstrates the electrical subcontractor’s unique railroad construction expertise. Current and ongoing Metro-North projects by Ducci Electrical include a $59.6 million in communication/signalization infrastructure work on the Metro North New York Harlem line, $49.5 million in work on the Metro North’s Croton Harmon Yard, $64.4 million in catenary/signalization systems in the replacement of the historic “Walk” Bridge over the Norwalk River, and $41 million in track/catenary system modifications to Metro North’s New Haven Yard.

 

This work comes on the heels of more than a half-dozen major mainline catenary replacement projects for Metro-North in recent years. In fact, Ducci Electrical has replaced every major section of the century-old catenary system on Metro-North’s New Haven Line over the past 20 years.

New Equipment Investments for Future Railroad Work

To better prepare itself for further growth in the railroad sector, Ducci Electrical continues to upgrade and refresh its fleet, recently purchasing multiple railroad-capable drilling rigs and several brand new custom Altec bucket trucks, which have been specifically designed to meet the unique challenges of railroad work. The Altec trucks join a diverse array of railroad-specific equipment that Ducci Electrical already owns and operates. This equipment includes cranes, dump trucks, flat beds, and drill rigs made for operating under low overhead wires, all outfitted with hydraulic rail gear so they can drive directly on railroad tracks.

Complexity and Safety Make Railway Work Challenging but Rewarding

Beyond the special equipment that it requires, electrical work in the railway industry presents considerable logistics and safety challenges. Companies like Ducci Electrical must pass a stringent approval process to begin a project, and all work must be scheduled weeks or even months in advance with detailed safety and logistics planning involved in every operation. Working just feet away from live electrical lines and speeding requires extensive precautions to ensure all workers go home in the same condition they arrived at work in every day.

For these reasons and more, railroad electrical work is certainly not for everyone. However, experienced and dedicated companies like Ducci Electrical have found remarkable success operating in this niche sector.