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Archeologists peek under Colonial City streets

A team of archeologists led by Greek consultant Agamemnon Gus Pantel is using new radar technology to monitor what is beneath the key 15th and 16th century streets of colonial Santo Domingo as part of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)-funded US$30 million Colonial City urban renewal project.

The main focus is the area surrounding the Santo Domingo Cathedral, the center of the old city. Pantel said that culture encompasses what is below the city, too, especially because the urban renewal project has a macro-vision of the city. He pointed out that it is not an archaeological project, but a reconstruction and paving program that requires archaeological monitoring to ensure that information that could affect the construction is conserved and documented. The experts are using ground-penetrating radar (GPR) that was also used to examine the area around the San Francisco Monastery. The system also helps with the installation of underground utilities pipes and cables prior to excavating.

Other archaeologists working on the team are Kent Schneider (Atlanta), Paola Schiappacasse (Puerto Rico), and geophysicist Dean Goodman (Los Angeles). In an interview for Listin Diario, they were accompanied by architect Alejandro Suarez, who is in charge of the street restoration project.

Suarez said that the information generated by the GPR is used to prepare a report as part of all the archaeological information compiled throughout the project. Once the first analysis is completed, the selected areas are studied using more traditional methods and excavations can begin within a month and a half. Dominican archaeologist Martha Roquel Aquino has been entrusted to advise on the archaeological finds.

Source: DR1, Listindiario

Category: DR News |

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Last updated March 25, 2017 at 5:40 PM
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