(Römisch-Germanisches Museum der Stadt Köln, Germany)

Abstract: Archaeological excavations of the Römisch-Germanisches Museum during 2010/2011 obtained new results for the reconstruction of the road system of Roman Cologne. In the southern suburbium a rectangular road system  was located , which dates from the time of the emperors Augustus and Tiberius. The aqueous environment nearby a prehistoric drain achieved a perfect wooden preservation. Wooden walkways were very well preserved (Abb. 1).  They have two functions: the wooden walkways were used to build and to support gravelled streets (Abb. 2). Since the time of the early emperors the center of Roman Cologne was linked with the southern suburb outside the city walls. From the beginning of the second century stone houses with porticoes were built  outside the city walls. Each quarter in the southern suburbium  was divided up into smaller plots equally. Like the quarters of the craftsmen inside the city walls the suburb has an urban character.  –  Questions of continuity and discontinuity of the streets in Roman Cologne will be discussed in the case of the ‘Via Belgica’, a continental street, which  starts  from the westgate of the CCAA  and ends in  Boulougne-sur-Mer at the Atlantic seaboard. In the western suburb of Roman Cologne the ‘Via Belgica’ changed from a trunk road or overland road to a street with an urban character in the end of the first / beginning of the second century  A.D. How was the ‘Via Belgica’ used in late antiquity and medival times?

Keywords: Road system of Roman Cologne, ‘Via Belgica’, Limes road along the Rhine