At the same time that Hezekiah was digging his tunnel (@ 701BC), he also needed a place to capture the diverted water. His engineers cut a pool out of the rock within the Jerusalem city walls (see II Kings 20: 20). This is referred to in Scripture as the Pool of Siloam (John 9: 7) or the Lower Pool (Isaiah 22: 9).
The Pool of Siloam holds a key place in the Bible for it is the location mentioned in John 9 where the Lord healed a blind man. There was also a Tower located here during the 1st Century that collapsed and killed eighteen (Luke 13: 4).
When you leave Hezekiah’s Tunnel today, you exit through a remodeled area of the Pool of Siloam that dates to the 5th Century and the Byzantine’s.
In autumn of 2004, construction personnel were doing preparatory work for sewage lines, not too far from the Byzantine Pool of Siloam. Their excavations uncovered stone steps that proved to date back to 1st Century BC. These steps led to a pool that was only 70 yards from the upper Byzantine Pool of Siloam. This lower pool is the Pool of Siloam referenced in John 9.
Did You Know?
Today, the neighborhood around the Old City of David is called ‘Silwan’. It is comprised of roughly 45,000 mostly Arab inhabitants. Silwan’s etymology traces back to the Greek ‘Siloam’ and the Hebrew ‘Shiloah’.