Topographic Surveys

Survey Services

A topographic survey collects information about the natural and man-made characteristics of land. Architects, engineers, and construction builders use topographic maps to accurately visualize sites and speed up development.Survey Services

To survey a site, surveyors set up their total stations, reflective prisms and GPS units on metal nails (known as control stations) hammered into the ground. They then measure the land, one point at a time. For professional help, contact Utah Land Survey.

A Contour Line Survey, also known as a topographical survey, is an important part of any building project. It determines the slope of the land, identifies all existing features and picks up all services and easements that may impact your construction site. It’s often performed around the same time as soil testing and is essential for determining whether you will need to level your land, if the building design can be accommodated by the site conditions and for the placement of service connections.

In surveying, contour lines are two-dimensional representations of elevation that are drawn on a plan or map. The distance between each contour line represents the height of an imaginary path that you would have to walk if you were walking across the land at the corresponding elevation. Typically, the closer together the contour lines are on a topographical map, the steeper the slope of the land.

To create contour lines, a field surveyor must visit the survey site and collect data for each point of elevation in the area to be surveyed. The points of elevation are then connected with smooth contour lines using French curves or other similar methods to create the desired contour map. In order to make a contour map that is easy to read, the surveyor will mark every fifth contour line with its elevation. This helps the reader to quickly identify the different altitudes of the land.

Having a good understanding of the different types of contours will allow you to make informed decisions about where to place features such as roads, buildings and fences. For example, you will want to avoid placing buildings on high slopes that could be vulnerable to damage or flooding. Similarly, you will want to consider the slope of your property when choosing a location for a water well or septic system.

When surveying on a steep slope, it is crucial to minimize the number of setups to save time and effort. Using a field book to record all observations can help you keep track of the number of setups required. It is also essential to follow all standard protocols to ensure the safety of your team members.

Photogrammetric Survey

The photogrammetry survey process works by capturing overlapping images of an object or construction site and then using software to stitch them together into a 3D model. This allows you to get the data and measurements you need without having to go out into the field. This is ideal for working with a limited amount of time, or if you need to capture data in an environment that is not suitable for manned surveys.

It is important to note that this type of survey requires a high-quality camera, and a large enough dataset in order to produce a quality result. This can be time-consuming, and it’s not something that can be rushed. Depending on the conditions of your project, you may have to take dozens or even hundreds of photos, ensuring that each one is of sufficient quality and there is adequate overlap between each photo. Additionally, you need to make sure that there are no drastic changes in lighting between each photo. This can have a big impact on the final product, and it’s also important to ensure that all of the pictures are taken under the same conditions.

This is why it’s so important to work with a team of experts when carrying out this type of survey. They will know how to make the most of the equipment and will be able to identify any issues that could impact the accuracy of the data. They can then recommend the best solution for your needs, and help you to achieve the results that you need.

Ultimately, photogrammetry is a great tool for obtaining the spatial and metric information that you need for your AEC projects. It can be a valuable asset for determining the shape of a construction or even for extracting measurements, and it’s something that can really help you save time and money in your surveying processes. By taking advantage of the latest technology and working with a team of experts, you can get the most out of this innovative technology. This will allow you to complete your work more efficiently, and ensure that the resulting model is accurate and precise.

Topographic Mapping

A topographic survey determines the location and elevations of natural and man-made features on a piece of land. Topographic surveys are often conducted by engineers or architects to help them create accurate designs for improvements and developments on the property in question. The survey also includes information on the shape and slope of a site, which is important to know when designing roads, bridges, or any other infrastructure project.

The first step in a topographic survey is to map the area being studied using aerial photography and/or ground measurements. The data collected from this process is then used to produce a topographic map or digital terrain model (DTM). The DTM is a 3D representation of the land’s surface that contains elevation and feature data.

Airborne topographic mapping — also known as air survey — became practical with the advent of the airplane and the camera. The combination of these technologies created the capability to collect and produce high-resolution maps on a large scale, making them useful for both military and civilian purposes. The need for these kinds of maps increased dramatically during the global conflicts of the twentieth century, when combatant nations needed to create detailed maps of territory occupied by their enemies.

During an air survey, a helicopter or fixed-wing aircraft equipped with a high-resolution camera takes photos of the terrain. The images are then processed to determine the elevations of points on the ground and to create a contour map. The DTM produced by an air survey is also useful for other purposes, such as locating underground utilities.

A topographic survey also involves determining the horizontal and vertical position of features on the land, such as buildings, fences, or streams. This kind of data is very important to have before starting construction on a property, as it can prevent costly mistakes or redesign work down the road. For example, a home owner may have to reposition the location of their building or add drainage to avoid flooding, septic systems, or erosion problems.

Having this data on hand can also help resolve disputes between neighbors over boundaries, such as where the edge of a driveway or tree line should be. A third-party topographic surveyor can take measurements on both properties to create a clear and accurate map of the land.


A GIS survey is a type of topographic survey that uses Geographic Information Systems (GIS) software to record and display data. This type of survey is used by engineers, architects, and land-use planners to identify and measure the elevation of a surface area. It also provides detailed maps of the area including contour lines and natural and man-made features.

A topographic survey is a valuable tool for anyone working on a construction project. It allows builders, engineers and architects to create designs based on existing conditions. This ensures that the project is built on the correct site, reducing costs and preventing time-consuming changes in midstream.

Topographical surveys are often performed before construction begins on a site. They provide a map of the site’s natural and man-made features as well as their elevations. This helps architects and engineers design buildings, roads, bridges, drainage systems, and other structures that are compatible with the local environment.

The most common type of topographic survey is a contour line survey. This type of survey uses a total station or GPS unit to collect data and create a contour map of the area being surveyed. The results are then presented in a format that is easy to read and understand. Contour lines are created by connecting points of equal elevation. These are usually displayed on a site map or in the form of a digital terrain model (DTM).

Photogrammetric surveys, which use aerial photographs to capture data, are another type of topographic survey. These can be used to produce 3D models of the survey area. The resulting files can then be used to create traditional topographic survey drawings.

Laser scanning and drone survey photogrammetry offer new possibilities for collecting topographic data. With these technologies, land surveyors can spend less time on the ground and gather a large amount of data in one pass. This data is stored in a point cloud, which is a collection of millions of points each with their own unique coordinates and colors. Using this data, surveyors can generate traditional line and level surveys and create a textured 3D model of the area.