Surveys and Mapping
Surveys and Mapping Division
The Surveys and Mapping Division operates under the umbrella of the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries to provide, store and maintain geographical data, land related, aerial and hydrographic information for the Government, Private Sector and Public of the Trinidad and Tobago.
The Division was first headed by the Crown Surveyor and then in 1922, the first Surveyor General was appointed. This post was then changed to that of the Director of Surveys and Sub-Intendant of Crown Lands.
In 1959 during the re-organization of the Public Service a decision was taken to separate the Lands function from the Surveys function. This lead to the post of Commissioner of Lands. However, this post was only legally established in 1980 when the State lands Act was revised. Subsequently, the Director of Surveys was given the responsibility of executing both the legal and administrative functions of the Commissioner.
Next, in 1988 Cabinet accepted recommendations from a committee established by the Minister of Planning and Mobilization on the restructuring of the Division. This resulted in the separation of Lands and Surveys to create two separate entities:
- Surveys and Mapping Division and
- Commissioner of State Lands.
- To administer, co-ordinate, maintain and extend geodetic control networks, traverses, precise leveling or other precision measurements forming the National Survey Control System.
- To produce and maintain cadastral maps, topographic maps, hydrographic charts, photogrammetric data and mapping.
- To facilitate the co-ordination of aerial photography required for government purposes and capable of being used in the production of maps.
- To provide the survey infrastructure necessary to integrate land related information.
- To specify requirements for and where appropriate, arrange surveys for land acquisition, state leases, licences, state grants and redefinitions of state land boundaries.
- To receive, hold, distribute, reproduce and sell, topographic, cadastral and derived maps, aerial photographs and other survey and mapping documents required for government or public use.
- To authorize and where appropriate, charge for the use or reproduction of survey and mapping information recorded by the Division.
- To be custodian of a Survey Register and appropriate index survey plans in which any survey made by a Trinidad and Tobago Land Surveyor shall be registered.
- The establishment of the precise boundaries of the waters under the nation’s jurisdiction
- The provision nationally, of graphic and digital land related data to consistent standards of accuracy and integrity.
“ To contribute to the development and economic success of Trinidad and Tobago by adopting new technologies for providing up-to-date and authoritative maps, charts and land and sea information, in conventional paper and progressively in digital form to meet the needs of Government, the General Public and the Private Sector .”
“To forge a partnership between management, the staff, trade unions, customers and the parent Ministry of the Surveys and Mapping Division to adopt new technologies and create a modern high performance learning service organisation.”
The following Legislation/ or Regulations guides the statutory obligations of Surveys and Mapping Division:
- Land Acquisition Act 28 of 1994;
- Land Surveyor’s Act No. 33 of 1996;
- Real Property Ordinance Ch 27 No.11;
- Resumption of Land Act Ch 57:03;
- Land Regulations Act, Act 28 0f 1994;
- Archipelagic Waters and Exclusive Economic Zone Act No. 24 or 1989;
- Territorial Sea Act No. 23 of 1986;
- Trinidad and Tobago Surveys Act Ch.60:01;
- Transfer of function (DOS) Legal Notice No.19 ;
- Lands Surveys Rules Legal Notice No.275 of 12/11/98;
Note: Information can be obtained in the Land Surveys Act No. 33 of 1996 on pg. 40
The Services offered by the Division are broken into three major categories as follows: