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Cadastral surveying

Cadastral (boundary) surveying relates to land ownership, measurement and definition of property boundaries.


Cadastral (boundary) surveying relates to land ownership, measurement and definition of property boundaries.

Cadastral surveys are performed for the re-establishment of existing property boundaries or for the creation of new property boundaries for land divisions. In South Australia, only licensed surveyors may undertake a boundary survey or place a survey mark that defines a properties’ boundary.

The Surveyor-General is the statutory authority for land surveying and cadastral boundaries in South Australia, and is responsible for issuing survey instructions in the form of Regulations, notices, directions, and guidelines for licensed surveyors. The Surveyor-General monitors licensed surveyor's compliance with survey instructions to ensure integrity of the State's property boundaries.

Cadastral surveying in South Australia is regulated by a four-tiered structure, the components being:

Plan Presentation Guidelines detail the Registrar-General's plan requirements.

Survey Mark Database

The Surveyor-General's Survey Operations Unit maintains the State's Survey Mark Database (SDB). The SDB can be accessed on the South Australian Property and Planning Atlas (SAPPA) and the South Australian Integrated Land Information System (SAILIS).

For more information on the Survey Mark Database visit Geodetic Surveying.

Certified survey plan checklist

Notice of the Surveyor-General (No 5) - Survey Reports require licensed surveyors to provide a survey report, including a certified survey plan checklist, at lodgement, for all certified surveys lodged with Land Services SA.

Certified Survey Plan Checklist (PDF 282 KB)

Land Services SA provide free access to download the PCplans application widely used by surveyors to check mathematical polygon closures and compare plan data against the published Map Grid of Australia 2020 (MGA2020) coordinates of permanent survey marks.

Providing permanent survey mark coordinates

Notice of the Surveyor-General (No 4) - Placing Permanent Survey Marks and Provision of Information for Permanent Survey Marks requires licensed surveyors to provide MGA2020 coordinates of permanent survey marks (PSMs) to the Surveyor-General.  

Use the Combined Scale Factor (CSF) calculator (XLS 26 KB)  to calculate the CSF to convert ground distances to MGA2020 grid distances for PSM coordination.

Complete the provision of PSM coordinates form (PDF 156 KB) to provide the Surveyor-General with coordinates for permanent survey marks.

Templates

Provision of permanent survey mark coordinates (XLSX 70 KB)

PSM Locality Plan (PDF 9 KB)

Differences to published coordinates of Permanent Survey Marks

Surveyors finding differences regarding permanent survey marks (PSMs) on surveys lodged with Land Services SA must report the discrepancies to the Surveyor-General, and provide updated coordinates for the survey mark.

PSMs with a Type B Positional Uncertainty (PU) attribute Reactive Soil Area shown on the SAPPA survey mark detail report do not require re-coordination.  

Type B PU Reactive Soil Area (JPG 617 KB) map

Use the Combined Scale Factor (CSF) calculator (XLS 26 KB) to calculate the CSF to convert ground distances to MGA2020 grid distances for PSM re-coordination.

Complete the PSM Coordinate Error Report (PDF 136 KB) form to notify the Surveyor-General of an error in permanent survey mark coordinates and provide the new coordinates. 

Provision of permanent survey mark coordinates (XLSX 70 KB)

Notification of final marking of division of land into more than 5 allotments

Surveyors carrying out a cadastral survey for a division of land into more than five allotments, must place all associated survey pegs and permanent survey marks, no later than 30 days after the completion of works for the provision of roads, drains or other services in association with the division of land.

Use the Combined Scale Factor (CSF) calculator (XLS 26 KB) to calculate the CSF to convert ground distances to MGA2020 grid distances for PSM coordination.

Complete the Notification of Final Marking form (PDF 183 KB) to notify the Surveyor-General of final marking of these subdivisions and provide the Surveyor-General with coordinates of the permanent survey marks.

Provision of permanent survey mark coordinates (XLSX 70 KB)

PSM Locality Plan (PDF 9 KB)

Audit & Compliance Framework

The Office of the Surveyor-General has established an Audit & Compliance Framework to provide education to licensed surveyors and monitor the standards of certified surveys lodged with Land Services SA. Desktop investigations and audit surveys gauge compliance by licensed surveyors with survey instructions in the Survey Regulations 2020 and Notices of the Surveyor-General.

Designated survey areas

The current Designated Survey Areas (DSAs) can be viewed on the DSA layer of the South Australian Property and Planning Atlas.

Superseded DSAs

Maps showing the extent of the superseded DSAs are listed below in numerical order with their date of operation.

DSA 003 Superseded Victor Harbor - 29 September 1993 (JPG 106 KB)

DSA 005 Superseded Waikerie - 15 March 1990 (JPG 84 KB)

DSA 006 Superseded Barmera - Berri - 15 March 1990 (JPG 97 KB)

DSA 007 Superseded Lyrup - 15 March 1990 (JPG 86 KB) and 1 July 1997 (JPG 84 KB)

DSA 008 Superseded Renmark - 15 March 1990 (JPG 133 KB)

DSA 012 Superseded Mt Gambier - 1 March 1991 (JPG 89 KB)

DSA 014 Superseded Roxby Downs - 1 July 1993 (JPG 83 KB)

DSA 015 Superseded Port Pirie - 1 July 1993 (JPG 104 KB)

DSA 017 Superseded Nuriootpa - 1 July 1993 (JPG 112 KB)

DSA 020 Superseded Meningie - 1 July 1993 (PDF 26 KB)

DSA 021 Superseded Craigmore - 1 July 1993 (JPG 73 KB)

DSA 065 Superseded Mt Barker - 1 April 1997 (PDF 72 KB)

DSA 088 Superseded Mt Compass - 1 June 1998 (JPG 104 KB)

DSA 091 Superseded Coffin Bay - 1 June 1998 (JPG 61 KB)

DSA 100 Superseded Port Lincoln - 1 September 1999 (PDF 85 KB)

DSA 114 Superseded Clare - 1 February 2001 (PDF 53 KB)

Survey searching guide

The Survey Searching Guide provides surveyors and searchers with a brief description of various sources of land survey information in South Australia and details about the location of original records.

Survey Searching Guide (PDF 1122 KB)

EDM calibration software

Download the EDM calibration software. Email DIT.SurveyOperations [at] sa.gov.au

Cadastral reform and innovation for Australia

Cadastre 2034 is the National Strategy for Cadastral Reform and Innovation for Australia. It has been published by the Intergovernmental Committee on Surveying and Mapping to promote an organised and consistent approach to managing the changing cadastral systems within Australia.

Cadastre 2034 - Cadastral Reform and Innovation for Australia - A National Strategy (PDF 2.2MB)