Villajoyosa recovers the Roman road that connected Allon to Lucentum

A section has been rebuilt in its original location, which is being musealized with criteria of smart monument, following the criteria of the Smart Tourist Destination.

Archaeological surveys prior to the construction of a building discovered in 2017 a section of the Roman road that linked Allon (Roman city of Villajoyosa) with Lucentum (Alicante). The archaeological excavation, carried out by the Mirador de la Mallaeta - Espacio Living Homes Company, and directed by the archaeologist Ana Martínez, documented the layout of the Roman road axis, which entirely crossed the north side of a large plot to be built. After the excavation the photogrammetry of the road was made, thanks to which we have a virtual image of the original. A section of 8.5 m in length -28 ft.- was also selected, in which each of the stones was numbered to be disassembled for subsequent reconstruction. The decision to preserve and musealize a section of the road found on this site is because it is the best preserved of the three imperial roads that have been excavated Villajoyosa to date.
In recent weeks, this section outside the urbanization on the public sidewalk has been restored stone by stone, so that any neighbor or tourist can access it shortly. The restitution has been made in its original position and exact orientation, although 1.5 m (5 ft.) above the level to which it was found, to allow its contemplation from the current street height. The work has been carried out for the Building Company by the archeology company Koré S. L. under the direction of a restorer, with the advice of Vilamuseu.
This road was built in the 1st century AD, that is, in the High Roman Empire, moment of splendor of Allon, the Roman city of Villajoyosa. At the end of this century we have evidence that all the entrance roads to the city were remodeled. This urban impulse came from the granting of the category of municipium to the city of Allon in the year 73/74 AD by Emperor Vespasian.
The restored remains show how the roadway was built 2000 years ago in a very similar way to the current roads, with a side foundation wall of stones carved with mud to reinforce the most sensitive part of the runoff arising from the rains. Then the road axis was paved by a first level of rammed earth and on it a second level of edges (rudus), which was also compacted to support the traffic of people and carriages. The width of the road axis is 14 Roman feet, which are 4.20 m., enough space for the transit of two carriages in parallel (the axis width of the Roman carriages was approximately 1.40 m –that is, 4.6 ft.-, but we must count the width of the upper place where the goods or people were, which was larger).
The works undertaken so far have focused on the restoration of old structures. Once the construction of the residential building is finished in the coming months, the musealization will be completed through interpretive panels of great accessibility -accessible to people who use wheelchairs and with resources for deaf and visually and cognitively disabled people-. There will also be a large graffiti mural on the wall of the building under construction to which the remains are attached, which will show the background landscape of the road in Imperial Roman times.
This monument further enriches the wide range of cultural tourism in Villajoyosa, which the City Council is musealizing with smart tourist destination criteria, by incorporating technology, innovation and accessibility.