Are You Concerned About Arranging an Archaeological Survey?

When you are planning a building project, you will inevitably focus on the future. You will be thinking about what the building will look like, how it will be used and what steps are needed to bring your project to fruition. However, even when you are so engaged with the future, you can't escape from the past entirely. One of the steps needed before your project can progress may be an archaeological survey. When thinking about the land where you want to build, you will have to look at the size and shape of the land and check that it was suitable for your property. You will also have to look at the surrounding area and the zoning laws to see whether the area was a good fit. While you may do these steps, something that may not have crossed your mind is what was built there in the past. If past use of the land comes up at all, it is often only in relation to any possible contamination issues, but its historical importance can't be overlooked.

When is an archaeological survey needed?

You can arrange an archaeological survey at any point if you have reason to think that the land could be of interest. However, the time that archaeological surveys are mostly requested is when permission to start work is requested. Often there will be local traditions about what may have existed in that area in the past, and the archaeological survey will only confirm those suspicions. For instance, perhaps the site may be important to the indigenous community or the site of an early settlement. Alternatively, maybe valuable links to the past could be damaged or destroyed by the building work. In either instance, an archaeological survey is an opportunity to record and save these relics before they are lost.

What happens during an archaeological survey?

An archaeological survey involves digging down into the ground to locate all points of interest in that area. All the finds will be carefully examined and logged. In most cases, the finds will be returned to the ground in their original locations. Sometimes, if a find is especially significant, it will be taken away for further examination and eventually preservation. As such, even when you opt for an archaeological survey, there will be no delay to your building work, and your project can continue as soon as the survey finishes.

After the survey

In general, the results of the archaeological survey won't force you to change your plans. However, there can be times when a major find is discovered, and you must make small alterations to your plans to prevent any damage to what is buried in the soil. If the site is of particular interest, your building work could be subject to ongoing monitoring work. The monitors will ensure that nothing that you do will harm the relics below the surface.

For more information, contact a firm that offers archaeological excavation services.