Harvard University Survey Standards & Specifications
Questions or Comments, please contact:
Planning Resources Director, University Planning Office
- Basic Standards
- GPS/Geodetic Control Reference Network
- Control Point Recovery Notes
- Survey Specific Elements
As part of an on-going effort to develop and maintain an accurate computerized base map of Harvard University, The University Planning Office's (UPO) Planning Resources (formerly Harvard Planning and Real Estate's CAD/GIS Unit) has established a common coordinate system for Harvard University surveys. Our coordinates are physically depicted by a network of monumented control points, brass disks set in concrete at various strategic locations around the University. All surveys completed at Harvard University should reference these established monuments, and hence, the common State coordinate system. Our system is consistent with the Massachusetts State Plane Coordinate System, Mainland Zone, North American datum of 1983. By basing all University surveys on a common set of control points, the University can achieve significant benefits including:
- consistent results across various survey companies,
- the potential to share survey data and use separate surveys in conjunction with each other,
- the ability to update and maintain the University's Geographical Information System with survey information that is already routinely gathered.
The following pages provide information about the coordinate system and describe the basic standards that need to be followed to insure compatibility with the University coordinate system. Specifications that detail the individual elements of a survey will continue to be the responsibility of the faculty or department contracting for the survey. When needed, UPO's Planning Resources can provide assistance in the process.
A full report on the network of geodetic control points and the survey techniques used to document their locations is available for review. Further information on these specifications can be obtained from:
Planning Resources Director
University Planning Office
1350 Massachusetts Avenue
Holyoke Center 5th Floor
Cambridge, MA 02138
At least two Harvard University Monumented Control Points are to be incorporated into each survey and shown and dimensioned on the map. Other landmarks and/or property stakes may also be used in combination with the Harvard University Monumented Control Points. Please refer to the recovery notes for locations of monuments. A description of said landmarks or property stakes, and recovery notes is to accompany each survey map. The Surveyor should notify the University Planning Office if it appears to be beneficial and cost effective to set up extra monumentation to densify and tighten the control network for a specific survey area.
A relative horizontal accuracy of Federal Geodetic Control Committee (FGCC) Second Order Class II (30mm + 50ppm or 1:20,000) or better is required. Elevations should also be converted to the City of Cambridge base. The Surveyor's report should match Massachusetts Land Court standards. The Surveyor will certify the accuracy of the survey. The Surveyor will also make available to the University Planning Office the results and date of the last calibration of the equipment to be used in the survey.
All survey maps and drawings are to be in digital format. The drawings are to be in AutoCAD Release 2000 or 2004 format at real scale. DWG files are preferred, but DXF files will be accepted. All measurement and dimensions on the drawings should be in feet and decimals. The drawings should also indicate a North arrow, state plane grid ticks, a legend of symbols and abbreviations, a scale, a drawing title, date and the name of the surveyor. The University Planning Office will provide the Surveyor with a prototype drawing, and a set of layering standards and convention for symbols, blocks and text styles and sizes to be used. Reproducible mylar of all surveys are to accompany the digital files. These copies will be the record drawings. The surveyor's stamp, signature and certification of the accuracy must be present on the mylar copies.
Before the final plan is certified, and if the scope and or schedule of the project warrant, a "progress print" and drawing file shall be submitted to the Project Manager for review and to the Information Resources Center. The University Planning Office will mark suggested revisions and return the progress print and drawing file to the surveyor for consideration.
Digital data, Reproducible Mylar, and associated survey reports of any survey conducted on behalf of the University must fulfill all contractual agreements and Harvard University Basic Survey Standards contained herein. Two sets of all materials identified as deliverables must be submitted, one set to the party contracting for the service and one set to the University Planning Office unless UPO is directly contracting for the survey.
The Surveyor will be responsible for arranging rights of entry to all lands on which work will be required. As needed, obtaining record documents and title information are the responsibility of the Surveyor. The final survey must bear the stamp of a Land Surveyor registered in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. When required by the type of survey, the Surveyor shall, in so far as possible, acquire data including, but not limited to deeds, maps, certificates, or abstracts of title, section line and other data including, but not limited to, deeds, maps, certificates, or abstracts of title, section line and other boundary line locations in the vicinity. The Surveyor shall be responsible for the accuracy and completeness of title matters relating to the survey. If specified, the survey must be suitable for filing with the Registry of Deeds. Access to deeds held by Harvard University will be made available to the Surveyor as far as possible. The University Planning Office will make survey information, contained in its files, available to both University personnel conducting University survey activity and those contracted to perform such activities. Please contact:
University Planning Office
Property Information Resource Center
550 Holyoke Center
Cambridge, MA 02138
1350 Massachusetts Avenue
|Designation||Layer Name||Modifier||Description||Color||Line Type|
|Civil||C-PROP||Property Lines and Survey Benchmarks|
|C-TOPO||Proposed Contour Lines and Elevations|
|C-BLDG||Proposed Building Footprints|
|C-PKNG||STRP||Parking Lot Striping and Handicapped Symbols|
|C-STRM||Storm Drainage Catchbasins and Manholes|
|C-STRM||UNDR||Storm Drainage Pipe (Underground)|
|C-ECTR||Site Electrical Substations and Poles|
|C-ECTR||UNDR||Underground Electrical Lines|
|C-ANNO||REDL||Redline Text||White||.015 Continuous|
|C-ANNO||LEGN||Legends and Schedules||White||.015 Continuous|
Harvard University GIS/Base Mapping Project (1992, 1998 & 2000 )
Prepared by BSC Group
425 Summer Street Boston, MA 02210
This report describes the network of geodetic control stations established by The BSC Group, Inc. for Harvard Planning and Real Estate between April and June, 1992. The project was spread over a 60 square mile area of Eastern Massachusetts in and around the Cambridge and Boston Campuses of Harvard University, and includes a total of 37 new survey control stations. A second set of four geodetic control stations (700 - 703) in Allston were established during March of 1998. A third set of six stations (704 - 709) were established in December 2000.
Satellite-based Global Positioning System (GPS) techniques were used to provide a precise horizontal control framework with a relative horizontal accuracy of Federal Geodetic Control Committee (FGCC) Second Order Class II (30mm + 50ppm or 1:20,000) or better. The final control system is comprised of 37 new points and 4 National Geodetic Reference System (NGRS) points computed in the Massachusetts State Plan Coordinate System, Mainland Zone reference to the North American Datum of 1983. the final least squares adjustment of the network include 72 quasi-independent GOS baselines ranging from .03 km (0.2 mi) to 5.4 km (3.3 mi) in length, and exhibited a redundancy of 103 degrees of freedom. The computed aposteriori variance factor passed the Chi-square test at the 95% level of confidence, resulting in relative confidence regions ranging from 8 to 20 mm (0.026 to 0.066 ft) horizontally and 13 to 56mm (0.043 to 0.18 ft) vertically at the same level. A regression analysis of these ellipses suggest an internal network accuracy of 5 mm + 3ppm horizontally (1:177323) and 11 mm + 6ppm vertically (1:86550), which implies an average error of 9 mm (0.03 ft) horizontally and 19mm (0.06 feet) vertically for an average baseline length of 1.2 km (0.74 mi).
Orthometric heights were established for all stations utilizing a combinations of measured GPS ellipsoidal height differences, conventional spirit leveling, and geoidal modeling. Heights are referenced to the National Geodetic Vertical Datum of 1929. Checks with existing vertical control and experience on similar project in this area suggest an accuracy on the order of 3 cm (0.1ft) +/- for the derived orthometric heights.
The results suggest that the overall accuracy of the network well exceeds that which was required by two full classes of FGCC accuracy. The excellent geometric distribution of the stations, together with the permanent monumentation of a subset on client-owned property offers an ideal basis for the growth of a highly accurate and comprehensive Geographic Information System (GIS) throughout the University. The strategic selection of the monumented control points also offers an excellent basis for the incorporation of future surveys for the University, in a way which will contribute to the timeliness and maintenance of the GIS in a seamless way.
NOTE: Red symbols indicate missing monuments
This report contains an outline of the surveying services conducted relative to the Phase I Aerial Mapping vertical datum. This report depicts the results of the static GPS survey mission and conventional differential leveling in Cambridge and Boston, Massachusetts. This survey was completed as part of a general services contract between The President and Fellows of Harvard College, Acting By and Through The Allston Development Group (now part of Harvard Capital Planning and Project Services) and Chas. H. Sells, Inc. for Survey and GIP Services.
The survey was conducted by Sells was to confirm that the photgrammetric ground control positions required for aerial mapping of Phase I are relative to the previously established National Geodetic Vertical Datum of 1929 (NGVD29). This report states the elevations surveyed by Sells in relationship to NGVD 1929, the elevations reported in the Harvard published reports and the differences between the two. The survey involved the recovery of control positions established by The BSC Group, Inc. for Harvard Planning and Real Estate. The BSC project was spread over a 60 square mile area of Eastern Massachusetts in and around the Cambridge and Boston Campuses of Harvard University, and included a total of 37 survey control stations. The first BSC survey was conducted 1992. A second set of four geodetic control stations (700 - 703) in Allston were established during March of 1998. A third set of six stations (704 - 709) were established in December 2000. The Harvard Control Monuments that were not recovered or found to have been movedldisturbed are shown in item 4. Elevations reported herein are in relationship to the NGVD 1929 datum in feet.
Survey Specific Elements
In addition to the required survey content, each survey will have specific characteristics. The following general guidelines cover specific features which should be added if they are consistent with the original survey purpose.
- Show on the survey map boundary lines giving lengths and bearings of lines, and radius, delta, and lengths of curves. The Surveyor shall verify this information with the Record Title. If the record boundary varies from the surveyed boundary, show the surveyed information and show in parentheses the record boundary thusly (100.23' by deed) for distance on (N32 -21' -24"E by deed) for bearing.
- Show boundaries of properties as indicated by existing landmarks. The Surveyor shall indicate the names of owners of abutting properties.
- Show boundaries as called for by recorded deeds. Wherever these boundaries do not agree, the surveyor is to stake and show on the map the boundary which he/she advises should be adopted.
- Install steel pins at lot corners if no monuments exists.
- State on the drawings whether monuments were found or set, and describe the relationship of all monuments to the boundaries.
- Identify four permanent bench marks on site.
- Show by full lines all existing railroads, roads and private right-of-way bounding upon, leading to, or within the property. Indicate traveled way, and trees, turf planting strips, curbs walks, and street railways, lamp posts and utility poles, fire hydrants, manhole covers, and catch basins, if any, in these roads. Label way "public" or "private". If public indicate when taken by city, and if taken on fee or only an easement.
- Indicate width of traveled ways, sidewalks, and planting strips, adding figures showing width in feet if established by public authorities.
Survey and indicate on the map:
- All interior roads, drives, walks, trails, cultivated areas, fences, walls, ledges, ditches, culverts, catch-basins, water courses, hydrants, lamp posts, and utility poles.
- Outlines of all structures, both on the premises and within 30 feet of the property line, showing outside doors, steps, cellar-bulkheads, verandas, terraces, etc., belonging to them. State type of construction and number of stories.
- Measure and label the distance from corners of structure to property lines, reference points and other buildings.
- Give minimum dimensions of all culverts.
- For all buildings occurring in the surveyed area, indicate the locations of the following items and record elevations thereof to the nearest 0.01 feet:
- Porches and landings, at top and at grade, including steps from grade.
- Spot elevations at all corners.
- Window wells and areaways.
- Locate and label recorded easements and rights-of-way; state owner of right, and give title reference of instrument (if any) creating the right.
- Show zoning district of property; if more than one zone, show the extent of each. show zoning districts of adjacent property and property across the street(s) or highway(s) or railway(s).
- Show building line and setback requirements, if any.
- Indicate every doorway opening with proper dimensions and locations, and include spot grades inside and outside building at each.
- Indicate on the map the approximate extent of overhang of branches of isolated trees, of masses of trees, and of high bushes.
- Locate accurately and show on map by strong dots all isolated trees over three inches in diameter.
- Unless otherwise directed, the kind of every tree so located is to be indicated on the map by letters forming abbreviations of their common names.
- The diameter of the trunk of each surveyed tree four feet above the ground is to be indicated.
- Locate and size all utilities in the street and on site, including gas, electric, telephone, cable television, and University steam and chilled water. Indicate size, depth and pressure of water mains. Indicate location of nearest fire hydrant and size of main. Indicate invert elevation of sewers, storm drains and catch basins. Indicate location and characteristics of power and communications systems above and below grade. For all sub-surface utility lines on the site, indicate and locate intersection and manholes for the first connection to the off-site system.
- Maximum error shall be 0.5 feet.
- Show contours at 1 foot intervals, with spot elevations at curbs, sidewalks, building entries, and at edge of property.
- spot elevations of pavements, rims, and inverts of utility structures, sill height for every window or masonry opening at ground level or opening to basement, building floors, bench marks, stairs (top and bottom elevations at each), and other fixed artifacts shall be to the nearest hundredth foot.
- Indicate every door opening with proper dimensions and location, and include spot grades inside and outside building at each.
- Contour error shall not exceed one-half contour interval.
- Provide spot elevations at street intersections and at 20 foot intervals along the edges of walkways and at top and bottom of curbs.
Last Modified: January 29, 2001, JBN