Archaeological finds possibly dating from the 13th century have been discovered during roadworks in Limassol’s old town, the antiquities department said on Monday.
“Foundations of architectural remains of a monumental medieval building have been found on Ayias Theklis street,” archaeological officer Giannis Violaris told the Cyprus Mail.
The roadworks in the old town are a €2.5 million plus VAT project to widen the roads surrounding the marina to four lanes, two in each direction, starting from Commandarias street until Siafi and Kioproulouzate streets.
“It didn’t come as a surprise that we found these antiquities, it is an area rife with history as it is so close to the castle. We were prepared for this.”
Stratigraphy is the next step the antiquities department will take, trying to discover if there are older archaeological finds under the most recently discovered ones that could be from an older time.
“The ones we have found are most likely from the Middle Ages. There could be something underneath that from earlier,” Violaris said.
Once the studies are completed, a decision will be taken as to what should be done. However Violaris believes the section will probably be backfilled and protected – meaning that instead of covering the findings with asphalt for the road, it will be covered with sand so it can still be used as a road.
“It is a very difficult location, it is on a popular street cars use.”
In the meantime, contractors are continuing their work by moving on to other streets until the antiquities department wraps up its work.
“Our work won’t affect the project. Now if something important is discovered though and we will need three months, of course we will have to do that. The right course of action will be taken depending on what we find,” Violaris said.
Thasos Aphanis, Limassol district officer of the public works department told the Cyprus Mail “works will still go on for the project, without causing disturbance on the scheduled duration of the project.”
The 18-month project, currently in its first phase aims to improve the roads connecting Franklin Roosvelt Avenue with the seaside. Undertaken by An. Christou Properties and Construction Ltd, 80 per cent of the cost is paid for by the state while the remaining 20 per cent by the Limassol municipality.