Land surveying and its importance

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Surveying and land surveying is the measurement and mapping of our surrounding environment using mathematics, specialized technology and equipment. Surveyors measure just about anything on the land, in the sky or on the ocean bed. They even measure polar ice-caps.

Land surveying is an essential service when a landowner wants to establish the boundary of his land. The surveyors work enables the landowner to know the angles, distances, elevation, location and area.

The profession of land surveying will call on one to be able to enjoy if not tolerate the outdoors. In addition a good land surveyor must be good at maths and geography which are essential to carrying out the work of surveying successfully.

Land surveyors work in the office and in the field. In the field, they use the latest technology such as high order GPS, Robotic Total Stations (Theodolites), and aerial and terrestrial scanners to map an area, making computations and taking photos as evidence. In the office, Surveyors then use sophisticated software, such as Auto-cad to draft plans and map the onsite measurements. Surveyors work on a diverse variety of projects from land subdivision and mining exploration, to tunnel building and major construction, which means no two days are the same. They are experts in determining land size and measurement. They also give advice and provide information to guide the work of engineers, architects and developers.

Even smaller pieces of equipment can benefit from proper land surveys. Diesel generators and pumps can be heavy and engineers need to construct plinths for the units to be situated on. Gensets are expensive and don’t want to be damaged by poor foundations of a building collapsing, especially with the vibration they generate during running.

Also Read:Digital Survey: 3D Laser Scanning

Importance of Land surveying

According to Renishaw plc, laser scanning is not only used in land surveying but is being adopted in more and more industries, since it gives detailed, accurate data, very quickly, and with fewer manpower requirements, saving companies costs. Surveying is important and most of us depend on it so as to ensure order in the physical world around us.

Surveyors play an integral role in land development, from the planning and design of land subdivisions through to the final construction of roads, utilities and landscaping. Surveyors are the first people on any construction site, measuring and mapping the land. These primary measurements are then used by architects to understand and make the most of the unique landscape when designing and engineers to plan structures accurately and safely, ensuring buildings not only fit with the landscape but are able to be constructed.

According to Haglöf Sweden AB, It is valuable for everyone to keep track of assets to maintain control and healthy growth. Standardization, calibration and control systems are used in all industries, and when measuring, storing and processing data on-site, error sources are efficiently minimized. Problem areas are detected in time and actions are based on facts and figures.

It is necessary to mark the boundaries on the ground, so that they are clear to observers standing on or near the property. Also surveying and land surveying is intended to provide the evidence needed by the title insurer to delete certain standard exceptions to coverage and thereby provide “extended coverage” against off-record title matters including matters that would be revealed by an accurate survey.

Many properties have considerable problems in regard to improper bounding, miscalculations in past surveys, titles, easements, and wildlife crossings. Also many properties are created from multiple divisions of a larger piece over the course of years, and with every additional division the risk of miscalculation increases. The result can be abutting properties not coinciding with adjacent parcels, resulting in gaps and overlaps.

Many times a surveyor must solve a puzzle using pieces that do not exactly fit together. In these cases, the solution is based upon the surveyor’s research and interpretation, along with established procedures for resolving discrepancies. This essentially is a process of continual error correction and update, where official recordation documents countermand the previous and sometime erroneous survey documents recorded by older monuments and older survey methods.

GPS Surveying

The market for survey grade GNSS as well as for GIS handheld GPS is increasing in Africa. Survey grade GNSS is used by Land surveyors for new township layouts, and by construction
companies for survey control points and for staking out roads etc. It is needed for drone surveys for ground control points, and is increasingly used for precision agriculture.

According to Mr. Dave Beattie of Autobild Africa a distributor of a wide range of trusted surveying equipment from South Africa, some African countries already have CORS systems for getting accurate fixes from what is called NTrip Rovers, using cellphone networks to access the CORS bases via internet. Those that do not have such systems are looking to implement them soon.

GPS Surveying

“Because GNSS equipment is solid state electronics, and because accuracies of different makes is the same, there is very little to differentiate between makes of GNSS. Ease of Use, flexibility and Support are the most important things to look for. Most makes now offer Windows controllers with universally used software such as Field Genius or Carlson Surv Ce. These programs are well established, used around the world and have built-in co-ordinate systems for all countries. They also work with all makes and models of GNSS as well as total stations,” he says.

“If I were considering purchasing I would be wary of buying a system that uses controllers and software built by the GNSS brand. This is their way of tying in customers for life. To expand ones system to several GNSS units, ones options become severely limited,” he adds.

Mr. Beattie further mentions that, to replace these controllers is very expensive. With Windows controllers and universal software one has unlimited choices and flexibility.  There are universal protocols used by all brands such as RTCM or CMR+. Some manufacturers program their GNSS antennas to communicate in Brand specific protocol. Once again, these brands should be avoided because it limits one to that brand only for future purchases and expanding ones system.

“For example you may have a base and rover set and need to expand by buying another rover. Keep your options open by sticking to windows systems as mentioned above. Then support is the next big issue, and of course price. Prices can vary significantly but, unlike Opto mechanical instruments, GNSS products are all generally robust, lightweight, and give the same accuracies,” he affirms.

35 thoughts on “Land surveying and its importance”

  1. It’s excellent that you went into further detail on the value and advantages of land surveying. I had no notion that surveyors were used in the development of infrastructure like roads; I had assumed that they were mostly utilized for residences and lots. In terms of lot borders, it’s nice to have a clear response so you know precisely where your property begins and ends.

  2. A thorough explanation on just how integral surveyors are to modern day society. Very interesting read, thank you.

  3. Hey, Great article! It’s really great that you explained the importance and benefits of land surveying. the facts have been discussed is really important. keep doing that!
    I would imagine that this would help you make plans as to where and how to build. I would be sure to hire a land surveyor before starting a construction project. For proper work to be done, it might help to hire professional land surveying company that are experienced and very good at accurate land surveys and drafting services.

    Keep it up!

  4. Very good information about land surveying and its importance. GPS Survying also play important role in land surveying I am also running land surveying business. it’s very useful information to our business ideas.

  5. All the best information regarding the land surveying importance . Such articles are not only knowledge enhancers but also very interesting to read and to learn to compare from.

  6. Dennis, I like that you said that land surveying is necessary to mark the boundaries within the property and ensure there are no miscalculations in the current land title. My husband and I are planning to buy an empty lot in a high-end residential area up the hill of our city. I’ll make sure that we hire a residential land surveying company before we buy the property to protect our interest. Thanks for this!

  7. Great job keeping the public informed about our land surveying services and contributions to society! We do land surveying in Arlington Virginia.

  8. Great job for mentioning our works as a land surveyor and its importance. We do land surveying in Arlington Virginia.

  9. My cousins just bought a chunk of land and are planning to convert it into our family home, complete with a horse ranch, for the family to gather during big festivities. I appreciate you explaining the role of a land surveyor in giving accurate and detail data promptly as well as mapping and measuring the land as I believe it is best to understand the land before hiring contractors to avoid any unwanted complications. My cousins and I are planning to meet up this weekend to discuss this further and I will relay this tip when we do.

  10. I really appreciate the part of the importance of land surveying since it has been a help to my studies concerning the importance of land surveying. keep on updating us

  11. I like how you included that surveyors play an integral role in land development. My husband and I were thinking about selling some land of ours and were wondering if we should get a land surveyor. We’ll keep this in mind if we decide to hire one.

  12. Thanks for mentioning how land surveying plays an important role in development. I understand that doing this can help you get the best property for your needs. It is important to understand that doing some research can help you find the best professional to help you with surveying your property.

  13. I like that this article explains how surveying provides information on the boundaries and is important for all aspects of land development, such as planning and final construction. In order to get this work done properly, it might help to hire land development consultants that are experienced in surveying and other necessary services. If you hire a consultant that is experienced with a variety of services could ensure you can get their help with every step of your project in order to make sure that you get the information you need and complete all the necessary work.

  14. Not many people think about why they might need to hire a surveying contractor to look over their land, but the article makes some good points. One of the more important ones that is made is the fact that land changes over time and there may be mistakes with prior bounding reports. A new, up-to-date land survey will tell you exactly where your property’s bounding lines are.

  15. Land surveying is definitely important when you are building something on a property. It will help you determine the boundaries first, like you said. That will probably help with any problems that could arise from not building in the right place.

  16. My brother wants to build his home from the ground up, and I suggested he get a surveyor before he begins any construction. Your article had some great information about land surveying, and I liked how you said that many properties run into problems regarding improper bounding, miscalculations in past surveys, titles, easements, and wildlife crossings. These issues could be fixed with a land survey, so I’ll share this with my brother and hopefully he’ll hire a surveyor for his property.

  17. I appreciate how you mentioned that land surveying is intended to provide the title insurer with evidence that will allow them to provide extended coverage for the land. My friend just bought his own property and wants to make sure that it’s safe and documented as such for his building project. I’m sure he’d benefit from the services of an alta land survey company in his area that can help him get the surveying and coverage the land needs to be documented as free of potential building problems. Thanks for the information!

  18. Hello
    Land surveying can be quite important for any major construction plans that you might have. Because of that, it really does help to know how much it will cost and what it will entail. For example, depending on the size of your property, the surveyor will have a longer, more expensive job to do.

  19. It can really surprise people to learn just how important land surveying can be. After all, as the article points out, you can use it for designing land subdivisions. That really be helpful for planning construction or other building projects.

  20. It helped when you mentioned how land surveying can help you design your structure better. It is good to see that you can get the most out of your property and money. We are planning on getting a property and wanted to know all its dimensions.

  21. It can really surprise people to learn just how important land surveying can be. After all, as the article points out, you can use it for designing land subdivisions. That can really be helpful for planning construction or other building projects.

  22. My wife and I just bought some property this year, so thanks for sharing this. I like your point about how a survey can help you design your land. We’ll be sure to do this so we know exactly where we can start building.

  23. It’s great that you elaborated on the importance and benefits of land surveying. I had no idea that surveyors were used for planning for things like roads; I thought it was mainly just for homes and lots. It’s nice to have a definitive answer as far as lot boundaries go so you know exactly where your property starts and ends.

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