The Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Joan McDonald shook off her champagne soaked hands and flashed a big smile after she smashed a champagne bottle on her first try to christen the "Robert E. Derecktor."
McDonald had the honor of christening the Robert E. Derecktor, the newly recommissioned dry dock at Derecktor Shipyards. The dry dock will allow the Bridgeport boat yard to repair and build larger ships.
“The partnership between Derecktor Shipyards and the state has been a fruitful one and one we hope will continue for years to come,” said Joan McDonald. “Derecktor is a brand known round the world, and we’re proud to support its growth. The company’s success in Bridgeport is a testament to the state’s commitment to the revitalization of our cities, reclaiming brownfields for productive use, growing our industries and creating job opportunities for all. Investments like we’ve made in Derecktor are vital to retaining and growing good jobs in our state and making Connecticut even more competitive in the global marketplace.”
"In economic development we often look to cranes as the sign economic activity is moving forward," McDonald said. "It's gorgeous to see cranes at a working waterfront."
Tom Derecktor, president of Derecktor Shipyards, said “The New dry dock not only lets us grow our work load, but let us easily transfer large vessels into our 300 foot building for major refits and other big jobs requiring a covered, climate controlled environment. We can now handle virtually every large vessel.”
"We could come here now," said Fred Hall, vice president and general manager of the Bridgeport & Port Jefferson Steamship Co. His company runs the ferries between Long Island and Bridgeport, but until now the firm has had to go to New London for repair work. He said Bridgeport has a lot of advantages for the ferry company now.
The shipyard has owned the dry dock for 15 years, but it was too narrow to handle larger ships. The dry dock was split in half and its deck widened. Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch also attended the ceremony introducing McDonald. He took a moment to explain what Derecktor's presence means to Bridgeport. He expressed some pride in the fact that next month Derecktor plans to launch the yacht Cakewalk, the largest yacht ever built in the United States, which is the same length as the destroyers the U.S. used to fight World War II.
Paul Derecktor, who with his brother Tom Derecktor runs the Derecktor group of shipyards, was enthusiastic about what the new dry dock meant to the company’s business “This is an important step for our future. The dock opens up new markets for us in not only the repair business, but in new construction as it allows us to launch larger vessels than ever before.”
The Robert E. Derecktor dry-dock went into immediate action after the christening lifting the ‘Lexa Gellatly,’ a barge, for Gellatly and Criscione Services.
· 4000 ton dry dock, 650 ton travel lift, 100 ton crane with 120’ boom
· Service up to 400 feet (122 meters), 85 foot beam (25 meters), 30 foot (6 meter) beam
· Full service yard, from world renowned new builds to all repairs
· Custom metal fabrication, ABS, Lloyds, DNV and USCG certified welders
· 300’X100’X75’main hall: 150’ X 70’ paint booth, both climate controlled
· Full engineering and design service
· Located a little over 1 hour of NYC and all major airports
· Two sister yards located in Mamaroneck, New York, and Dania, Florida