Bankruptcy proceedings won't sink an international ferry proposal being floated by the Detroit Port Authority.

The port authority has been working on establishing the ferry between Windsor and Detroit for two years.

The chief of staff for the Detroit Port Authority says the bankruptcy filing won't affect the authority because it's a separate entity.

He says even if the $250,000 a year it receives from the city dries up it won't scuttle the ferry plan.

In Canada, Windsor West NDP MP Brian Masse says the challenge now is to get customs officials on both sides of the river to agree on the logistics.

Masse and other officials toured the Detroit Port Authority facility in Detroit last summer. At that time the Americans believed the ferry would be running by now.

Officials on both sides see benefits for commuters and tourists.

"You could stay in Windsor or you could stay in Detroit and you could visit both back and forth without having to use your car," Masse said. "And then come on over to visit to the casino or one of the restaurants or even Erie Street here."

The Detroit authority has a funding commitment from the U.S. government for the boat. But there still has to be a solid business case for the plan.

"They're getting some background work done at the University of Michigan to look at the business case for it," Masse said. "Still, the major components are available and support is still there, politically."

Masse says the Detroit facility could handle both Canadian and U.S. inspection facilities, if border officials on both side of the river agree.

"What that would do is alleviate having to do any hard infrastructure on [the Canadian] side," Masse said. "That would be significant. We would just need a shelter or something small for the docking."

It's not clear whether the city or the Windsor Port Authority would pay for a dock in Windsor.

"They want to determine exactly what the proposal is and whether it makes sense from their standpoint to allow that facility to onto Windsor land," port CEO David Cree said.

The last time an international ferry carried people between Windsor and Detroit was in 1929.

Masse is waiting for the business plan report from the University of Michigan and then he will pass that along to Transport Minister Lisa Raitt. He has already written her a letter informing her of the ferry plan.

Meanwhile, a U.S. federal bankruptcy judge will begin the first hearing into Detroit's bankruptcy filing on Wednesday.