If you’re interested in finding out what is a topographical survey is, you’re looking in the right place. 

In short, a topographic survey is a survey that gives you a clear picture of the surrounding area, land, boundaries and drainage. 

Furthermore, the topographic survey will help any planner or developer understand the constraints of the surrounding land. These constraints are easily planned around and considered early on helping to avoid unforeseen issues which could cause delays. 

How is a topographical survey measured?

Being able to have a clear understanding of the prospective site and land allows landowners to work with the space available. 

To measure this outline of boundaries and land, the survey draws upon a combination of traditional methods as well as specialist equipment.

Traditional methods used for topographic surveys

Your surveyor will be able to collect the results of your survey and place the findings in a detailed terrain mapping as well as display it in CAD software. This clear oversight of the land allowed you to have real transparency over the whole site. 

The ability to share data and collaborate with multiple departments results in avoiding major hold-ups down the project timeline. 

Specialist equipment used for topographic surveys 

We strive to use the most accurate and latest technology which leaves no margin for doubt or error. The equipment we will be using is Total Stations as well as detailed terrain mapping as touched upon above.

Using multiple techniques to collect your data means we’re able to present clear and precise drawings of the site. We appreciate your project will always have obstacles to overcome however, an accurate and clear set of site drawings won’t be one of them. 

Having your data results online is convenient. Having said that, we know not everyone works in this way. Sometimes you need to just have the physical copy of the drawings in front of you to work off of. We’re happy to provide you with printout copies of your site so you can work the way you want to. 

Your senior surveyor will provide you with the drawings on CAD software as well as present them in PDFs. 

With you being at the centre of the process, your senior surveyor will work with you to understand your objectives. They’ll actively look to produce results that help you answer those specific questions. 

Does my project need a topographical survey?

Whether you’re building a site of residential homes or building a new runway at an airport, you’ll need a clear understanding of the land. This is when a topographic survey is essential in giving you a clear picture of the space you are working with. 

From domestic builds to larger commercial builds, you’ll be looking at different types of topographical surveys. 

Image of a surveyor surveying the ground.

Types of topographic surveys

These are the different types of topographic surveys which are used for a variety of 

2D and 3D topographic surveys

Typically we have seen 2D surveys being used on construction projects but we also know 3D surveys give a wealth of information about the built environment and infrastructure of the project. 

Boundary Surveys 

The last thing you need is a battle with a partition lawyer. Making sure you understand the boundaries of your site to the most precise measurements will lead to a smooth project from a boundary standpoint. 

Setting out

Your architect is going to want to get their hands on the setting out survey. Being able to understand the scalability and relationship to other obstacles, buildings and structures allow for accuracy from the architect early on.

Contour Surveys 

This type of survey will take a look at the contours of your site which can heavily affect the design and accessibility of your site. 

GPS (VRS) Surveys 

By using satellite imagery, this survey collects data which allows us to measure the distance and dimensions of space between structures with accuracy.

Monitoring Surveys 

When movement goes undetected, the completion of the build is in jeopardy. Spotting movement early on and being able to create solutions to prevent it is unveiled by a monitoring survey. 

Cross-Section Surveys 

The cross-section survey allows you to understand the difference between site design and the actual terrain.

Ecological Surveys 

Making sure you don’t disturb the ecological setting of your site is a crucial part of your planning permissions and conditions. This survey will give you an understanding of the nature of your site and how you can benefit the quality of the site’s ecology

All of these surveys are available through our highly experienced surveyors at Midlands Survey. Get in touch today and discover the right survey for your project. We’re happy to guide you through the process of getting the information you need for your project. Contact us today and start your survey.