Lake Erie cross-border ferry closer to reality

ASHTABULA, Ohio — Shippers transporting freight by highway around Lake Erie may soon have a marine option if proponents for a new cargo ferry between Port Maitland, Ont. and Pinney Dock in Ashtabula, Ohio get their way.

According to the Star Beacon newspaper, U.S. Rep. Steven C. LaTourette, R-Concord, has thrown his support behind the proposed ferry, which would be operated by MarineLink Inc. on the Canadian side.?
The intermodal service would reportedly cost Canadians $7 million and the Ashtabula Harbor $2 million for infrastructure improvements needed at the docks.

The plan calls for a barge that could carry about 100 truck trailers at a time, which then be transported across Lake Erie to and from Port Maitland, which, sitting on the mouth of the Grand River to Lake Erie, is roughly opposite Dunkirk, N.Y.

Trucks would be able to bypass much of Route 11 and Interstate 90 by using the ferry service, LaTourette says.

Exempting the ferries from the federal Harbor Maintenance Tax are goals of a new bill introduced in Congress by U.S. representatives Stephanie Tubbs Jones, D-Cleveland, and Phil English, R-Erie, Pa.?
— from the Star Beacon

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