A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America
Roman Urban Planning Techniques Investigated in Cyprus
Monday, December 16, 2019
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA—In-Cyprus reports that Craig Barker of the University of Sydney and his colleagues investigated Roman infrastructure in the vicinity of the theater at the site of Nea Paphos, which is located in southwest Cyprus. The theater was constructed in 300 B.C. for dramatic performances and was eventually used by the Romans as an arena that could be flooded for water spectacles. In A.D. 365, the theater was destroyed by an earthquake. The recent investigations exposed the Roman road to the south of the theater. It was constructed with limestone pavers, ran east-west to the city’s northeastern gate, measured nearly 28 feet wide, and was equipped with a drainage system. Wheel ruts in the road indicate it was used by vehicular as well as foot traffic. Barker and his team also found debris of the fourth-century earthquake on the road surface, and evidence that its stone blocks were reused in later periods. Some 100 feet to the south, evidence of a pathway covered in rubble was uncovered, along with building foundations and fragments of painted plaster. Barker said the position of the road and the pathway helped to confirm the size of city blocks in the region around the theater. To read about the A14 highway excavations in Cambridgeshire, which exposed Roman remains in addition to evidence of Anglo-Saxon and medieval occupation, go to "Letter from England: Building a Road Through History."
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