Beginning in the 1960’s, Honor Frost initiated several investigations aimed at identifying the existence of harbour installations around the coast of Tyre. While her initial exploration focused on the southern side of the former island, she also identified the significant archaeological potential for harbour facilities within the northern coast of Tyre (Frost, 1971). Later, she encouraged local Lebanese archaeologists to continue this research and provided mentorship to the first underwater investigations lead by Noureddine and el Hélou in 2001 who had been appointed by the DGA. The underwater investigations conducted by the Lebanese team confirmed the existence of a man-made structure within the northern harbour area of Tyre, in addition to confirming the high potential for the existence of significant submerged archaeological resources in the surrounding area (Noureddine and Hélou, 2005).
Frost continued to advise Noureddine and el Hélou on scientific and historic principals during subsequent investigations within the northern harbour at Tyre. The team continued to investigate the archaeological significance of the area, with the main focus revolving around the identification of an ancient jetty structure. Based on subsequent research and underwater investigations in 2004 (Castellvi et al, 2007) and 2005 (Noureddine, 2008) this underwater structure has been interpreted as representing a harbour jetty installation suggested to date to the Phoenician Iron Age. This interpretation is based on a number of attributes, including comparative construction methods and materials used for Phoenician harbours identified at Tabbat al-Hammam and Atlit (Noureddine, 2010).
The main objective of the 2013 field season was to complete a topographic survey to investigate the extent and spatial context of the archaeological resources associated with the Phoenician harbour on the northern side of Tyre. Additional objectives for the 2013 field season included the assessment of the current site conditions and existing state of preservation of the underwater archaeological resources affiliated with the identified jetty structure.