Following this discovery, archaeologists started exploring the adjacent area, and it wasn't long before they found the entrance to the pilgrims' road.
Excavating this ancient road was a feat of modern engineering. The excavation team knew they couldn't close off the Old City or the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan in order to carry out a traditional dig. So, they worked underground while the hustle and bustle of Jerusalem life went on in the streets above them. They had to use special fibrotic cable cameras to decide where to dig, and a team of engineers worked to ensure the ground around the excavation was strong enough to support the people and buildings above.
The official opening ceremony for the pilgrims' road was held on June 30, 2019 after 8 years of excavation. In a bold display of solidarity with Israel and the Jewish right to be in Jerusalem, two top US diplomats - Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt and US ambassador to Israel David Friedman - attended the event.
Speaking at the ceremony, Friedman addressed Trump's recent decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem: 'Were there any doubts about the accuracy, the wisdom, the propriety of President Trump recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, I certainly think this lays all doubts to rest.'
The incredible discovery of this pilgrims' road raises the question: What other structures and artefacts from temple times are hiding beneath the stones of the ancient Jewish city of Jerusalem?