Nicaragua has signed an agreement with a Chinese company for a $30bn canal between the Atlantic and the Pacific.
Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega is looking for foreign investment from Brazil, China, Russia and Venezuela to help build the waterway as an alternative to the Panama Canal.
For more than 150 years, the country has looked to build a canal across Central America but has never been able to get the project off the ground.
Planners there say the project would lift Nicaragua - the second poorest country in the Western Hemisphere - out of poverty.
Al Jazeera's Adam Raney reports from San Juan del Norte, a town on Nicaragua's coast that could see big benefits.