Benefits of conducting Underground Utility Surveys at the design stage

Ensuring a construction project is delivered on time and within budget is a contractor’s ultimate aim. Avoiding surprises and challenging issues along the way makes the journey smoother, and outcome more cost-efficient.

All too often, we receive requests for underground utility surveys before the spade is about to hit the ground. Whilst this is a commendable step in protecting the workforce against service strikes, surveying at this stage can identify unexpected buried utilities which require design modifications.

Underground utility surveys are the equivalent of hindsight. By conducting surveys early in the development cycle, architect’s plans can be optimised before planning permission is sought with full knowledge of any utilities to be avoided or diverted.


  • DESIGN AND PLANNING: Ultimately, having full knowledge of existing utilities means that a project only needs to be designed once.

In addition, full survey information allows you to identify optimal connection points for new site supplies based upon existing utilities and highlights any potential utility diversions.

It will also mitigate any potential design issues based on the existing utilities. For example, on a recent electrical connection project, a gas main was present on site and the new electrical cable had to maintain a specific distance from this.

As an added bonus, a full underground utilities survey will allow accurate information to be pulled together at the tender stage during the procurement of a contractor.

  • HEALTH AND SAFETY: Risk reduction through increased knowledge and preventing against incidents from service strikes. Underground utility surveys can ensure the safety of the workforce and the public during construction.

  • COST AND TIMESCALE IMPROVEMENTS: Having full visibility of existing below-ground obstructions mitigates against unexpected surprises which would cause labour downtime whilst a solution is found. This prevents against additional costs associated with project delays.


Rock Surveying boasts a specialist and experienced team who excel in tailoring utility mapping surveys, including both GPR and Topographic surveys, to meet individual demands, creating a detailed final product that saves time, cost and resource when compared to conventional trial hole excavations.

We’d be delighted to offer you a free, no obligation, competitive quote for your surveying requirements. Please email Emma on or call 01905 456384.

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