Louisiana envisions offshore port to lure mega-ships

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A few Louisiana businessmen and politicians are dreaming big — as big as the megaships of the future that may grow so large they won't be able to make it into the Mississippi River and up to the Port of New Orleans.

They envision those super-sized ships unloading and loading goods 100 miles downriver where the Mississippi meets the Gulf of Mexico — where today there's only open water.

But it's an idea that some experts and competitors find far-fetched.

In August, the port's backers said they had $25 million in private financing to build the first terminal to handle bulk goods such as grains and coal. The group is applying for permits. Backers envision $10 billion worth of terminals to handle everything from oil to cargo containers.