Does your building site have a history?

How much do you know about where you are planning to build? You may have picked the location because it is centrally located, close to transport links, or because the area is home to a demographic that you want to target. These are obvious reasons for selecting a particular site, but they don't tell you everything about the area. These reasons relate to what can be seen on the surface, but what about under the ground? If you are considering a development project, you will probably be aware that you will need approval from the Planning Commission, but what you may not know is that, in addition to meeting zoning requirements and not affecting your neighbours' property rights, you may need to arrange for an archaeological survey before permission will be granted for work to start. You may only be interested in what lies beneath the surface if it affects the foundation of the building, but vital historical relics could be hidden just out of sight.

What happens during an archaeological survey?  

If you discover that an archaeological survey is needed to support your application, you should already have a clear idea of what the survey might identify. The two most likely reasons that a survey might be needed are that the site is significant in Aboriginal history or that significant events took place in that locality during the early colonial period. It's helpful to find a team who specializes in cataloguing relics from the period you expect to uncover. They will know what they are searching for and can work quickly, so your project will not be unnecessarily delayed. Once the initial survey has been completed, all the finds will be carefully recorded. Most of what is uncovered will be returned to the ground in its original location, although a major find could be removed for a more thorough investigation.

After the archaeological survey

In many cases, the results of the survey will have no impact on your proposed development. If it is decided that the site must be preserved, you could be asked to make small changes to your proposed design to avoid damaging anything buried in the ground. It is also possible that you may be required to undergo regular monitoring during construction work to check that nothing historically important is disturbed during the work.

By complying with the requirements for an archaeological survey and bringing in a team of qualified specialists, you can keep your project moving forward on time.

Contact an archaeological survey service to learn more about your site.