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Published: Tuesday, 7/1/2008

Kaptur, others will tour Nova Scotia site that may become link for Toledo freight shipments

U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D., Toledo) will lead a nine-person Toledo delegation to Nova Scotia to tour the site of a proposed deepwater container terminal that could become a link for international freight shipments to and from Toledo.

Aides to Miss Kaptur said the trip, starting today, will be a follow-up to discussions she, Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, and representatives of the Melford International Terminal project held in Columbus in April.

"The Melford-to-Toledo intermodal concept has great potential for economic development in our region," Miss Kaptur said. "I hope to learn more about the project and offer suggestions about how to realize Toledo's potential as a key production and distribution center."

Melford is a proposed port along the Strait of Canso in eastern Nova Scotia that has water depths exceeding 70 feet, giving it the ability to dock massive new container ships.

While most oceangoing cargo is expected to transfer to and from trains at the port, Toledo officials have promoted the idea of shipping some of it on smaller vessels over the St. Lawrence Seaway system to Great Lakes ports.

Toledo also would be well-situated to become a Midwestern rail hub for Melford cargo, since it has service from the Canadian National Railway, which also has the only continuous rail line into Nova Scotia.

Other members of the delegation include James Hartung, president of the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority, and Dr. Lloyd Jacobs, president of the University of Toledo.

The nine are to fly to Halifax today, then meet with project officials and tour the Melford site by air and boat tomorrow. They are to return Thursday.

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