Over the administrative heart of Philippopolis was housed a well-known establishment among the people of Plovdiv during the socialist years


Today we walk among pieces of history of thousands of years and discover in the remains a part of the most lavish part of the central square of Roman Philippopolis, but not so long ago there was a cult establishment on the archeology that some Plovdiv residents still remember: Lotos Bistro.

At first the space north of the Post Office was a street, as Gladstone Street continued not as an underpass, but at the present pedestrian level. It was not until the 1980s that the construction of the underground road began. On the site of the current archeology, there was a cult establishment - Lotos, where young and old gathered for a drink and to see what was happening on Main Street. Outdoor tables, coffee and lemonades, and a favorite meeting place - just above the staircase that leads from the Main Street to the digs, Lotos ranks alongside names like the Milk Bar and Trakia Bistro.

In the 80s, the first excavations were made, parallel to the construction of Gladstone Street. Later, again in the neighborhood, the emphasis was placed on the shopping areas - for many years there were various establishments there, such as the popular Serbian grill and later pancakes, old book editions were also sold.

Even before 2019, a team of archaeologists and architects began work on exposing the site in the form in which we can see it today - as the most representative part of the square, where a series of important public buildings were located. Underground was the Treasury. In the northeast corner was situated the Odeon - the city council of Philippopolis, where the city magistrates met and all the fateful decisions affecting the city were made. To the west of it was the city library. Philippopolis was one of the few ancient cities to have libraries typical of the eastern provinces of the Eastern Empire. To the west of the library, the southern facade of the city's basilica was revealed, in which court proceedings were held - here we have a lot of epigraphic evidence that cases were carried out in the square. These were the main buildings, parts of which we may see uncovered there.

The Odeon itself is expected to be opened with the underground spaces to it, as well as the entrance from Gurko Street, but the work there is still ongoing.