Measured Surveys & Stage 1 of the RIBA Plan of Work

The purpose of Stage 1 of the RIBA Plan of Work is, essentially, to allow both the client and design team to agree the project brief and project outcomes. Frequent dialogue between the architect and client is paramount; this stage presents an opportunity to agree the quality aspirations of the project, what is spatially required and is the beginning of the design phase.  Stage 1 is about refining and validating the information gathered in Stage 0. 

Despite enthusiasm from other stakeholders (and the client themselves) to move hastily to the Concept Design stage, Stage 1 is vital for architects and design professionals and should be scrutinised accordingly. Feasibility studies are key to Stage 1 which ensure a potential project not only meets the brief, but that any subsequent design is undertaken with an appreciation of risks and challenges. As such, measured surveys play a particularly key role in both ensuring the success of Stage 1 and, ultimately, a project’s overall success. 

Accurate base survey information is vital and any existing survey information used at Stage 0 may need to be updated. Measured surveys typically required include topographical surveys, measured building surveys, utility surveys, CCTV drainage surveys and verification surveys of any existing survey information. Using a specialised survey company, such as Terrain Surveys, to provide the information that we know is required, enables the architect to focus on the creative aspects of the design process.  

On a recent regeneration project for Wandsworth Council, Terrain Surveys provided topographical surveys and utility surveys of the development sites showing all of the crucial information for Stage 1 of the project. The surveys provided clear site information in 2D and 3D formats so that the architect can analyse the topography, contextual factors, access to the development, existing services provision, environmental impacts and sustainability factors. 

Providing sufficient data for the early stages of the RIBA Plan of Works is key and following the initial surveys we are able to provide further survey details for the detailed design stages, often without the need to return to the site. Collaboration is key to ensure that the survey data aligns with the project requirements. Terrain Surveys boast extensive experience in working with architects at all stages of the RIBA Plan of Work.  

Should you have a project at the early stages and are looking to instruct a measured survey, Terrain Surveys would be pleased to assist. 


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