Roman Villa in Spain Threatened

From Euro Weekly:

A UNIQUE Roman villa dating back 17 centuries is threatened by the AVE High Speed Train in Barcelona.

Archaeologists and residents in La Sagrera are protesting in support of the only Roman villa found in Barcelona which was uncovered a month ago and could end up as little more than a reconstructed mosaic in a museum if plans for the AVE go ahead.

Some 1,000 metres of walls and paving have been found of a villa believed to have been a villa dedicated to farming, with an area for the noble residents from the ancient Barcino.

A mosaic has been found, which will be conserved and part of which has already been removed, but locals want the findings to remain in their original site. There were many villas around Barcino but most were covered by the district of Sant Andreu and La Meridiana.

Experts believe an in depth study should be carried out, but Barcelona City Hall claims the site has no value and has given the go-ahead for it to be taken to pieces. The opposition will propose that it be kept in its original location with the AVE tracks being completed on either side of it.

I don’t think we had any coverage of its initial discovery in rogueclassicism a few weeks ago … an excerpt of an item in English at Urban Habitat gives some details about the find:

[…] Building work on the access points to the AVE (new high-speed) railway station have led to the discovery of the remains of a Roman villa in the area of the Pont del Treball Digne, in the La Sagrera neighbourhood.

So far, an area of approximately 1,100 m2 has been identified, which extends beyond the limits of the work area and, from what has been discovered up to now, it appears to have been Roman villa with baths, divided into three large areas.

The northern section of the site reveals a series of rooms lined up one after the other and the southern area features another set of chambers, this time arranged in two perpendicular corridors,with an area for baths.

The area between these two blocks of rooms might have been an open space or atrium, around which the other buildings of the urban part of the villa would have been distributed.

Although no specific information can be given on the founding of the villa, some ceramic pieces from the high Imperial period have been recovered, indicating it might have been in use up to the 4th and 5th centuries at the least.

The excavations confirm the complex had gone through many alterations during its lifetime.

As regards the baths area, a cold water pool has been identified, and the hypocaust of what must have been the hot water pool.

The most interesting find in the Roman villa, its mosaics, will soon be removed from the ground and moved to the MUHBA’s archaeology laboratory, where they will be cleaned and treated for subsequent study. […]

… a video at El Periodico (and elsewhere) gives a really good idea of the size of this villa (it’s pretty large) …. can’t find any images of any mosaics therefrom.

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