Winter is generally an off-season for construction projects, but just because things slow down doesn’t mean that progress has to stop. Here are 4 reasons why updating your GIS maps in the winter will benefit your community all year long and keep your municipal projects moving forward during the colder months.

  1. Availability. Because construction work slows in the winter, survey crews can often start immediately and be more flexible with your scheduling needs.

  2. Efficiency. Thanks to the cool weather, crews can be more efficient when completing survey work. Without leaves on the trees, there’s no canopy cover to interrupt the satellite GPS signal used to conduct most surveying projects, leading to an increase in survey accuracy.

  3. Easy Updates. Once again, because winter is a slower season for construction projects, it’s a great time to gather invert elevations and structure locations for any new utilities, as well as missing information needed to update GIS or system maps.  

  4. Progress. Taking care of your surveying needs in the winter will keep your projects moving forward and help prepare you for spring construction.


For the last few years, the Village of Huntley, IL has taken advantage of winter surveying in order to inventory their sanitary, storm, and water utilities and update their GIS maps. By updating their GIS, the Village can cross check the attributes of current structures/mains and identify the age/material type for any structures/ mains that do not have current information in their GIS.  This information is invaluable for:

  • Completing future condition assessments

  • Querying substandard infrastructure components

  • Future budget forecasting for correcting structure/main deficiencies

  • Feeding projects/cost information into the Village’s Capital Improvement Planning process.

This process/functionality is essential for any municipality’s long-term GIS planning.

For more information on how updating your GIS maps this winter can help your community all year long, or to get an estimate on winter surveying services, please contact an expert at Ruekert & Mielke today.

About the Author

Ruetten, Chris.JPG

Christopher j. Ruetten, P.L.S
Professional Land Surveyor

Chris joined Ruekert & Mielke, Inc. in 2013 and has more than 18 years of experience in land survey. Chris is a Professional Land Surveyor and has been an integral part of R/M’s projects all over southern Wisconsin .

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