Cadastral surveying

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:

Survey Regulations 2020
Download PDF | 266 KB

Notices of the Surveyor-General
No 1 - Accuracy
Download PDF | 318 KB

No 2 - Marks Approved as Survey Pegs
Download PDF | 311 KB

No 3 - Placing or Accepting Survey Marks
Download PDF | 318 KB

No 4 - Placing Permanent Survey Marks and Provision of Information for Permanent Survey Marks
Download PDF | 331 KB

No 5 - Survey Reports
Download PDF | 322 KB

No 6 - Approved Form of Certificate
Download PDF | 312 KB

No 7 - Exemptions
Download PDF | 314 KB

Cadastral Survey Guidelines provide detail to supplement:
Download PDF | 266 KB


  • cadastral survey instructions
  • requirements of the Survey Act, Regulations and other legislation
  • Information about boundary common law and survey practice in South Australia.

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

Resources

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).

Learn more about 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
Download PDF | 284 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 to calculate the CSF to convert ground distances to MGA2020 grid distances for PSM coordination:
Combined Scale Factor (CSF) calculator
Download XLS | 26 KB

Complete the provision of PSM coordinates form to provide the Surveyor-General with coordinates for permanent survey marks.

Templates
Provision of permanent survey mark coordinates
Download XLSX | 73 KB

PSM Locality Plan
Download PDF | 9.45 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 map
Download PDF | 96 KB


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

Complete the PSM Coordinate Error Report 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
Download XLSX | 73 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 to calculate the CSF to convert ground distances to MGA2020 grid distances for PSM coordination.
Combined Scale Factor (CSF) calculator
Download XLS | 26 KB

Complete the Notification of Final Marking form 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
Download XLSX | 73 KB

PSM Locality Plan
Download PDF | 9.45 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.

Audit & Compliance Framework
Download PDF | 1.63 MB

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
Download PDF | 52.7 KB

DSA 005 Superseded Waikerie - 15 March 1990
Download PDF | 59.9 KB

DSA 006 Superseded Barmera - Berri - 15 March 1990
Download PDF | 66.3 KB

DSA 007 Superseded Lyrup - 15 March 1990
Download PDF | 56 KB

DSA 007 Superseded Lyrup - 1 July 1997
Download PDF | 58.9 KB

DSA 008 Superseded Renmark - 15 March 1990
Download PDF | 58.5 KB

DSA 012 Superseded Mt Gambier - 1 March 1991
Download PDF | 63.2 KB

DSA 014 Superseded Roxby Downs - 1 July 1993
Download PDF | 52.8 KB

DSA-015-port_pirie.pdf
Download PDF | 53 KB

DSA 017 Superseded Nuriootpa - 1 July 1993
Download PDF | 58.6 KB

DSA 020 Superseded Meningie - 1 July 1993
Download PDF | 26.3 KB

DSA-021-craigmore.pdf
Download PDF | 52.1 KB

DSA 065 Superseded Mt Barker - 1 April 1997
Download PDF | 72.2 KB

DSA 088 Superseded Mt Compass - 1 June 1998
Download PDF | 52.4 KB

DSA 091 Superseded Coffin Bay - 1 June 1998
Download PDF | 40.6 KB

DSA 100 Superseded Port Lincoln - 1 September 1999
Download PDF | 85.2 KB

DSA 114 Superseded Clare - 1 February 2001
Download PDF | 52.6 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
Download PDF | 1.1 MB

EDM calibration software

The latest EDM calibration software can be obtained by contacting AGD.SurveyOperations@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
Download PDF | 2.16 MB