ARA Client FTP Site:

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Archaeological Assessments

In accordance with the archaeological assessment technical guidelines developed by the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, archaeological assessment takes place through a phased process as follows:

Stage One:

Stage-one investigations consist of an archival search of any known historical, environmental and archaeological data for the subject property. The information obtained in this search may be used to determine the archaeological potential of the study property. Sources in stage-one investigations may include, but are not limited to, historical maps and archives, oral histories, geophysical mapping, and Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport site data files.

Stage Two:

During this stage of the assessment, field crews are dispatched to the subject property to examine it directly for the presence of archaeological and heritage resources. Visual inspection or subsurface-testing techniques are employed depending on field conditions. Significant archaeological finds are noted on large-scale field maps, and diagnostic artifacts (i.e. buttons, coins, pottery, bone, stone tools) are retained for analysis. At this point, Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport guidelines are employed to determine whether or not a site requires further investigation. If nothing is found, a report is made to the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport and the property will be cleared for development.

Stage Three:

If a potentially culturally-significant deposit is encountered during stage-two investigation, further study is carried out in stage three. The site is submitted to a controlled surface pickup (CSP) in which all surface artifacts are individually plotted using a surveyor's total station. The deposit is subjected to a series of test excavations to determine its age, cultural affiliation, density, and extent. A determination is made, in consultation with the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, regarding the need for further investigation in the form of full (Stage 4) excavation.

Stage Four:

In the final phase of the process, a site which is endangered and cannot be preserved is subjected to mitigative excavation. Stage-four excavations are carried out according to Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport guidelines and industry-accepted standards and practices. At ARA, we endeavour to collect research-grade data. Our collections are effectively curated and are made available to qualified scholars and researchers.