A ritual bath, or mikveh, has been uncovered only 20 meters from the Western Wall. This mikveh must have served the many pilgrims who came to Jerusalem and purified themselves before ascending to the Temple Mount.
According to the IAA:
In his book The War of the Jews, Josephus Flavius writes there was a government administrative center that was situated at the foot of the Temple. Among the buildings he points out in this region were the council house and the “Xistus”- the ashlar bureau. According to the Talmud it was in this bureau that the Sanhedrin – the Jewish high court at the time of the Second Temple – would convene. It may be that the superb structure the Israel Antiquities Authority is presently uncovering belonged to one of these two buildings.
This discovery is only the beginning of the excavation of this structure and chances are there are more surprises to come.