In my P Harn a port of sorts has been established with the aid of the Peonian Church and their mission to the Domi Goyzida. It is a haven for ships caught against the lee shore, a safe spot for water and repairs and trading with the local Goyzida for fish, produce etc. to reprovision ship's stores. The road has not yet been established, but a trail, marginally passable to carts when it is dry (Is it ever dry on Harn?) exists to the north as far as the Salt route. Another, passable to foot and mounted traffic, including pack animals, extends west to Ibonost along the south edge of the Teb Marshes.
The reasons the road is opposed by the Ramala province interests and the Eidel province interests are, as I understand them:
1. A road connecting Telen to the coast directly would bypass Coranan and Kuseme and possibly Moleryn, giving merchants from the upper Thard valley access to the Salt Route and the sea without spreading the wealth (in the form of tolls, bonding fees, and normal travel expenses etc.) to the above named cities. Telen would have to have a major ferry or a bridge and all the infrastructure to support a major crossing point. The influence and income of Marshall Kronos and his cronies would be reduced and the influence and income of the Nordakas and their associates would increase.
2. A road connecting Telen to the coast would require the pacification of or co-operation with the Goyzida. Kronos would not mind seeing them pacified on the model of the Solari Crusade in Melderyn, but this is unlikely as they have a "safe haven" across the border in Kanday. The Kandaian crown has a historic relationship of friendship with these tribes, or at least some of them, and will not look kindly on forces chasing them across the border in a campaign of extermination.
3. Because of the above, the most likely route to making the project a success would involve the crown of Kanday as a friendly broker in establishing good relations with the Goyzida. Kronos does not like the Goyzida. Kronos does not like the house of Kand. Kronos has the influence to say, "No." in the Senate and make it stick.
4. Such a road and port would make the upper Thard stronger commercially and politically by making it less dependent on the lower Thard for its commercial connection to the rest of the world. And since the Nordaka clan control key parcels of land along the proposed route, their influence in the upper Thard valley would wax as well.
So, IMC, the Nordakas have bypassed the Senate, using religious and commercial resources to get the ball rolling on the project. Though the Peonians have not made many converts among the Goyzida, they have established friendly relations and a mutual respect between the missionaries, knowledgable in medicine and agriculture, and the Goyzida in the area where the port will be located. (Location of the actual port is a natural harbor discovered south of any previously surveyed site and right on the Kandaian border, making Kanday a stakeholder in the venture.)
By moving to make the port a self sustaining mission and trading post first, the Nordakas are hoping to create a natural demand for the road project. It will, as mariners and merchants become aware of it and accustomed to using it, become a center of gravity. Much easier to sell a road to "someplace" than to sell a road into the howling wilderness.
The Nordakas have also dealt "family to family" with the house of Kand on issues involving the port. The occasional trips of the Sherrif of Peris to Shiran have provided cover for contacts at the highest level when matters negotiated between representatives of the two houses needed to be finalized. This has allowed them to avoid "government to government" contacts where the opponents of the project might have been able to sabotage the negotiations. These agreements remain secret, as do the negotiations which have produced them.
My PCs have been involved in the exploration, some of the missionary activity and the negotiations between Nordaka and the Goyzida and between Nordaka and Kand. Also, in liason between Nordaka and the Peonian Church. Those of them who have become known to Marshall Kronos are almost as popular with him as Cobart and Amerak Nordaka.
There is a chair and an NPC for visitors on Saturdays. We play most weeks. PM me. "You will always be my friend. You know too much."