Land Surveyors of Topographical Surveys across the North West, Lancashire and Yorkshire

One of the most important surveys for any construction project, a thorough topographic (‘topo’) survey can prevent costly delays by highlighting, amongst other things, the difference between existing ground levels versus proposed design levels, the accurate positioning of proposed works and the ability to check that the physical and legal boundaries of the site match up. When executed at the initial stages of a project, these checks prevent costly delays and help to keep projects on track and within budget. Check out our standard survey specification list to help you compile your survey requirements. 

A Topographic Land Survey in progress

The purpose of a topographical survey is to gather data on the natural and manmade features of the land as well as the contours of the terrain itself. This data is then analysed and interpreted into a three-dimensional, easy to understand, base plan.

The detail on your survey can vary from site to site. Examples of features that can be picked up are:

  • The boundaries to your land,
  • Existing building positions on or adjacent to your site,
  • Road and path locations,
  • Street furniture,
  • Watercourses,
  • Underground services,
  • Highways,
  • Railroads and pipelines,
  • Changes in ground surface and level and
  • Individual or groups of trees.

All details are shown in 2D or 3D with levels related to Ordnance Survey datum. Depending on your requirements, our topographic surveys can be undertaken to an industry standard or to your individual specification, using the latest technology. When quoting for your project we will always tell you what features we expect to pick up in the survey, before we start it, so that you know exactly what you’re getting. We can also produce your survey in a range of digital formats from hard copy to DWG or DXF file formats that can easily be sent by e-mail.

Topographic Survey Example

The wide range of information that the topographic survey offers makes it highly useful for all professional map users. Below are examples of some of the land surveys that we have produced for our clients:

  • Measured survey for urban landscape design – an in depth topographic survey detailing all urban infrastructure
  • River section surveys and flood risk surveys – to assist with flood risk assessments (FRA).
  • Proposed pipeline surveys – a topographic survey of an area to show the ideal routes for proposed pipelines.
  • Highway infrastructure surveys – detailing all permanent features that exist along a highway in order to assist with proposed road amendments or new road alignment.
  • Surveys for mixed use development plans – topographic surveys for proposed planning applications or redesign.
  • Railway infrastructure surveys – to view what railway infrastructure is in place or for bridge redesign and implementation.
  • Site surveys - to accompany commercial or residential planning applications.
  • A survey showing the positioning boreholes for geotechnical companies – so that the results of specific boreholes can be accurately related to the site.
  • Topographic surveys for environmental impact assessments (EIA) – for uncultivated land projects or rural restructuring projects.
  • Pond, lake and coastline surveys – showing erosion of coastlines over time (for comparison) or for size and depth of levels.
  • Topographic base plans for tree surveys – giving land owners a clear picture of where the most important trees sit within their property or for Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs).
  • Topographic surveys for land resale – used for the breakup of large parcels of land or to show a representation of the size of land to be sold.
  • Boundary surveys – to determine the exact boundary lines between two neighbours with conflicting plans.
  • Surveys for submission to the Land Registry – for boundary demarcation.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. What is a topographical survey?

    A topographical survey or land survey is the recording of the man made or natural features and levels of a piece of land for development or change of use. All points are shown in 3 dimensions on a scaled drawing in the format of your choice.

  2. What is included in a topographical survey?

    A topographical survey can include as little or as much information as our clients require. Just give us your end use requirements and we’ll help you to decide the amount of detail you need to pick up.

  3. Where can I get a quote for a topographical survey?

    To obtain a quote just give us a ring to discuss your project or send an e-mail with as much detail about the site as you can including the name of the site, the road and a post code. Quite often there will already be existing plan information which always helps with providing a detailed quote. Once we have this information one of our experienced land surveyors will contact you with a proposed fee, survey scope and timelines for completion.

  4. What is a traverse?

    A traverse is a series of stations in a loop or network that reduce errors within a survey.  These are generally used on a large scale survey where accurate control stations are essential.

  5. What is a benchmark?

    Benchmarks are a series of markers covering the whole of the UK which were established early in the 20th Century and checked at a regular basis over the following years.  With the emergence of more reliable and accurate GPS technology these benchmarks are slowly becoming obsolete.