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Canal to Join the Centre and the South!


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Tagmatica Guardian

Tagmatium?s Premier Newspaper

Plans for a Canal Announced by the Ministry of Trade

 

The Ministry of Trade held a press conference yesterday, during which plans were mentioned to construct a canal on the isthmus which connects plots 180 and 98 together, and by that extension, the Occidental sub-continent of the region to larger southern subcontinent.

 

The canal would connect the Sea of Kings to the Gulf of Raga and the Sea of Raga, cutting the travel time between the south of Europa and the north significantly. At the moment, to travel south from the central area of the region, it is necessary to loop around the whole north of the Occident and then travel down the Gulf of Gaius into the Sun Ocean. A canal would eliminate this need completely.

 

As yet, there has been no date sent yet for the beginning of construction of the canal, nor projections of the costs of the enterprise. Teams of Imperial civil engineers are surveying the landscape to see whether a strait forward canal could be constructed or a much more complex system of locks and dams is needed to cross over any heights that are on the isthmus.

 

A lock system would be the most expensive option, whilst a plain canal would be the cheapest.

 

The Greater Holy Empire itself would be fronting the money for the construction of the canal, as it would most benefit Tagmatium itself. It would be a nationalised operation, in keeping with Tagmatium?s socialist economic principles.

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?You realise that it does mean that the mosaic will have to be altered.?

 

The mosaic in question was the one that took up the vast majority of the floor in the Imperial Office and was as ancient as the rest of the Imperial Palace Complex. It had been added to and changed over time, as new parts of the region were discovered or countries changed their shape, or even when new lakes or waterways were added or made.

 

The Holy Emperor turned to the civil engineer, who looked slightly nervous in the presence of the most powerful man in Tagmatium, who looked slightly like a thinner version of Father Christmas. ?I?m only joking, of course. Have you found out how much the project will cost, yet??

 

The engineer shook his head. ?Your majesty, we?ve not been able to ascertain that, yet. There are, however, no real obstacles are in the way of the building of the canal. That isthmus is almost the perfect site for a canal.?

 

Commodus nodded. ?And what about any locals who will be displaced by the digging of the canal??

 

?We are going to offer any such people a large sum in compensation, your majesty,? replied the engineer.

 

?I think we?d better extend that to citizenship of Tagmatium and that we will give them land to settle here, as well. After all, we are destroying their lives and homes by building this canal. Have you any idea when construction will begin on it??

 

The engineer shook his head once again. ?When all of the locals have been relocated, then we can begin to shift some of the heavy machinery in to start the cutting. It will also take a good long while to assemble all of the workers and equipment in the surrounding area, before we start the operation proper.?

 

?So a good few weeks, then??

 

?Yes, your majesty.?

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Almost a month had past since his audience with the Holy Emperor, and Chief Engineer and head of the project Alexius Sphrantzes was still feeling as unconfident in the project starting properly as before. Oh, the machinery and workers had arrived on time and the locals who were directly in the projected path of the canal had been alerted and agreed to move, but problems still arose. The local petty state which owned the land had begun to act oddly towards the disembarkation of the machinery, with inspectors daily arriving to ?investigate? the machinery for smuggled goods, full well knowing that there was no such thing on them. They had been finally discouraged when Sphrantzes had paid a group of labourers, armed with pick-axe handles, to jump the latest inspector when he was on his way to work. Sphrantzes had heard from his local contacts that that move hadn?t gone down well with the ruler of the area, but the Chief Engineer wasn?t going to let that add further problems to the slow progress that was being made.

 

?They apparently hit a much harder rock formation than was previously thought to be there, sir,? said a surveyor, putting down a telephone in the small portacabin

 

The Chief Engineer rolled his eyes. ?Whatever bloody next? Did they say how long it would take them to cut through it, then??

 

?Uhhh, roughly an extra 10-15% longer, the team leader said.?

 

Sphrantzes rolled his eyes and silently mouthed a swear-word. This was becoming fairly ridiculous, a comedy of errors. He consoled himself with the idea that it was still barely a month into the operation, one of the largest feats of civil engineering in the region of Europa. The benefits of the completion of this project were enormous. It would massively reduce the travel time between the north and the south, as well as giving the Greater Holy Empire a huge strategic advantage, as it was going to be Tagmatine property. It filled him with patriotic pride to be assisting on such a task to forward the greatness of the true heirs of Rome in Europa, but at the moment that pride was being overwhelmed by stress and anger.

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Councillor of Trade Office

O'polis, Orioni

 

Aide: Milady, I have some disturbing news regarding the balance of powers. It seems the Tagmatine government is constructing a channel in the great northwest. If this plan is realised, they will have an advantage over us in that part of the region.

 

Councillor: That sounds disturbing indeed. But you don't have to see this as a bad omen. This channel can also work to our own advantage, if we manage to persuade the Tagmatines to let us fund a part of the cost in return for joint use of the channel. That way would give our own merchant fleet more opportunities as well, don't you agree?

 

Aide: Yes Milady, you are right. If you like, I can arrange a meeting with our Councillor of Foreign Affairs to discuss this issue.

 

Councillor: You do that. And put a taksgroup of at least five people on this. Also make sure we get a diplomat who is specialised on northeastern politics on that taskgroup as well.

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The Prince looked up from the papers on his desk.

 

"A canal you say? Well, well, well still think they rule the damned world do they? And how does the great trading nation of Orioni feel about this?"

 

"At this stage the government of Orioni has said nothing sire, but I am sure the empress is currently preparing some kind of response. The Orionians is will not allow any nation to get a trade advantage over them without a fight."

 

"Quite."

 

"The potential advantages - economic and militarily - for Tagmantium are large sire."

 

"Yes T'Rothric, I am aware of that."

 

The Prince looked at the map once more.

 

"Well, it's not actually Tagmantine territory, so that gives use something to work with."

 

"Sire"

 

"Maybe its time Tagmantium bought our silence...get the Tagmantine ambassador and find out who rules the people in the canal zone."

 

"Yes sire."

 

 

 

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TBC Lunchtime News Broadcast

 

user posted image

The first sods of earth have been turned over on the canal project, and now building work is well under way. The first stages of the project will be undertaken using small-scale diggers and earth-moving equipment, so that the engineering and surveying teams can quickly investigate any differences with geo-physical readings they have previously taken without disturbing any large and difficult to move machinery.

user posted image

Once these initial stages have been completed, the heavy-duty canal digging machinery will be brought in from Tagmatium in order to begin the digging proper. In fact, the vast majority of the machinery is already in place, just awaiting the completion of preliminary trenches and final geological surveying of the path of the canal.

user posted image

This shows one of the immense machines constructed for the task of digging the huge canal to join the Sea of Kings to the Raga Gulf. These were originally constructed to dig some of the shipyards in Petrium Naval Base, and now will be used to dig the vast canal, wide enough to take super tankers and other cargo carrying vessels.

user posted image

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  • 1 month later...

The huge machines had done their jobs well. The canal now stretched from one end of the isthmus to the other, and was at least a hundred metres deep. At its present state, it was easily wide enough and deep enough to take the huge container ships which carry most of the sea-bourn cargo about the region. In fact, it was even designed to be wide enough to take two side by side comfortably.

 

One of the reasons for its fairly rapid completion was that there was no need for locks or flooded lakes like other such canals. The water from Raga Sea to the Kant Sea/Sea of Kings was level, and there were no huge mountain ranges that needed scaling.

 

All in all, Chief Engineer Alexius Sphrantzes thought it had been a success so far. The next step in the process would be to remove the blockages at either end and flood the canal, although that would wait until all the machinery had been removed and the last bit of the concrete facings had been laid down on the walls and floor of the canal.

 

The naval detachments were doing a good job from preventing any truculent locals from doing anything that may have infringed on Tagmatine plans, although he?d not heard any shots fired. Threat of arms was enough.

 

Sphrantzes knew that he was going to be looking at a courtly title and pension when this was over for all the work he?d done for the good of the Greater Holy Empire. Probably the rank of Hyperatus, he thought to himself. For services rendered to the Greater Holy Empire. It would bring prestige to his family. The Holy Emperor Commodus III himself would be visiting the canal in about a week to finally open it.

 

The canal itself was of huge importance, strategically, militarily and economically. Possession of it would mean that Tagmatium commanded traffic from the Sea of Kings to the Raga Sea, and could charge money for passage, thereby boosting the Greater Holy Empire?s economy. It would also mean rapid passage if any of the south League members became embroiled in trouble. Tagmatium would guard it jealously.

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OOC: It'll add it to the map then. White LT color, with a bit of blue in the middle. I won't put your flag on it, if that's ok. Would be a bit stupid because one wouldn't be able to see the canal.

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