Electrification would cut reliability, there are no longer a switcher in Danbury or in South Norwalk like in New Haven days that could rescue a train without power, now if a tree comes down or a other calamity cuts the juice it would take at least hour to get engine up the branch.
Interesting and valid observation. But CTDOT is not a railroad and does not probably think about the details of operational issues such as that.
But I will say I'm old enough to remember, and to have ridden it a number of times, when it was
electric, and I have to say I do not recall problems with falling trees taking down the catenary --- although neither will I say it never happened!
likely to get in the way of catenary construction is the world-famous NIMBY effect -- can't you just picture the uprisings from the residents along the route who are absolutely certain they will suffer from Terminal Impotence*** and other such life-theatening conditions from being near a hi-voltage electric field.
Every catenary pole on branch needs to be replaced as the bottoms are rotted out.
Unfortunately so. But they existing I-beam poles would be replaced no matter what, as they would install the European-style catenary just as was done on the New Canaan Br.
***Now that I think about it, living near a hi voltage electric field might just result in the opposite problem, i.e., Terminal Priapism. I trust this comment will be taken in good fun.