In June 2015 the GPIA organised in cooperation with the Hebrew University Jerusalem and with the financial support of the Fritz-Thyssen-Stiftung the workshop „Quo vadis „Biblical Archaeology“? Past, Present and Future of Archaeology in the Southern Levant“. The 30 participants from Israel and Germany covered the whole spectrum of “Biblical Archaeology” with their talks.
In August 2015 the GPIA began the excavation on the Anglican-Protestant cemetery on Mount Zion, which will last for a couple of years. The goal of the first campaign was to make the walls visible again, which were known through earlier excavations, so that they could be available for further archaeological and historical research. To this belong also a comprehensive documentation with pictures, a survey of the contexts and a 3D-reconstruction of the old excavation reports. In the following years other excavations will take place within the former city walls. Furthermore, a park for visitors is planned, where the different walls and parts of the city are explained.
In September 2015 the first campaign of the geophysical investigation to locate the so-called “Second Wall” took place. It is a cooperation of the GPIA Jerusalem with engineers from the Institute of Technology Ilmenau, financed by the German Research Foundation. During the first campaign the local conditions for measuring were checked and incidental problems solved. First measurements with the Ground-Penetrating Radar (GPR) were taken in the excavation below the Church of the Redeemer, in the courtyard of the former Luther-School and in a Crusader hall on David Street. Another campaign is planned for 2016.
In the following years the concept of the archaeological park “Through the Ages” will be reshaped. The Professors F. Gabler and C. Söller-Eckart from Darmstadt evaluated the prevoius presentations and worked out together with graduate students an enhancement of the presentations. The interactive presentations will particularly enrichen the archaeological park.
The excavation on Mount Zion – including the cleanup and measurement of the mikveh (a Jewish ritual bath) – was opened in May 2016. The excavation was continued in September and October 2016.