Topographic Survey

What is it?

A topographic survey is a property survey that shows local variation in elevation, also known as vertical relief or contours.

Why do I need it?

A topographic survey is often required when you are planning on developing or building on your property. Architects and engineers use the topographic survey as a starting point as they develop plans for the buildings, structures, or other features of the planned property.

How do you do it?

An accurate property survey is the starting point for a topographic survey. In addition to the field work required for a property survey, the surveying crew sets up a grid on the property and measures the elevation at each point. In addition to elevation measurements at the grid points, the crew determines additional points needed to guarantee an accurate drawing of more complicated topographical areas of the property. After the data is collected in the field, CAD (computer-aided design) tools are used to develop contours and final drawings. The drawing also denotes locations such as utilities, streams, roads, wetlands, railroads, buildings, or other physical features of the property.