From the Turkish Daily News:

The Herodes Atticus Hamam, situated in Çanakkale's ancient ruins of Alexandria Troas, is believed to be the largest bath from the Roman era in Anatolia and is just waiting to be unearthed.

Excavation team leader and German archaeologist Professor Elmar Schwertheim told the Anatolia news agency there are a total of 30 people on the team from Münster Wesfalische Wilhelm University and Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University (ÇOMÜ).

Schwertheim said digs were started by the Çanakkale Archaeology Museum in 1997 and that he's been in charge since 2002. "This year we are working on uncovering the temple, the city's main avenue, the agora and the wall. Restoration work on the city's east door [main entrance] is also under way," said the professor.

Schwertheim said St. Paul passed through this city on his journey to Europe, where he would spread the Christian faith, adding significance to the ancient city's faith-based tourism appeal.

Herodes Atticus Hamam:

Professor Schwertheim said the most significant structure of the ancient ruins was the Herodes Atticus Hamam, which was built in 135 A.D. and which has become the symbol of the city. He said the bath was just waiting to be unearthed but much funding and time were needed to do the job. "Up until 1809 the major part of the structure was standing, but after an earthquake only the visible part of the arches remains. This bath is the largest Roman-era bath in Anatolia. Its facade measures about 100 meters. Arches that are still standing attest to its monumental dimensions."

Restoration began in 2000. One of the arches, made out of soft seashells and limestone, was facing further destruction and was taken under protection. Schwertheim said this season's dig began on Aug. 1 and will last through Sept. 15.

The city's history:

The ancient city of Antigoneia was built by Antigonos Monoftalmos (one-eyed Antigonos) at the end of the fourth century B.C. It was rebuilt by Lysimakos at the beginning of the third century B.C. and renamed Alexandria Troas in honor of Alexander the Great.

It is believed this area was used as an area of settlement during the Hellenistic period since it was built on the coast.

Greeks from the cities of Gargara, Hamaxitos, Neandria, Kolonai, Larisa, Kebren and Skepsis settled down here to make it the biggest settlement in Anatolia at the time. Based on Roman texts, Alexandria Troas was visited by Julius Cesar and deemed important enough to be declared a capital city.

Some wanderers in the Middle Ages thought this ancient city, visible from the sea, to be the ruins of Troy, which brought many visitors. The city was a center of maritime commerce in its heyday and collected customs fees from seamen passing through on their way to the Black Sea.