Engineering Services

To complement our surveying services and provide additional support to our valued clients, Van Harten continues to grow and expand our consulting engineering services with three licensed professional engineers, a number of engineering technicians and CAD support. The engineering team at Van Harten offers the same level of objective professionalism, knowledge and personal attention to detail that our surveyors have provided to loyal clientele since 1968.

Read more about the Engineering Services we offer below.


New commercial, institutional and industrial developments are required to go through a site plan process prior to applying for a building permit.

Depending on the type of development, municipality and team of consultants, our scope of work varies with each project. These projects often involve coordination between the site engineer, structural engineer, architect, landscape architect and geotechnical engineer. At the onset of the project, Van Harten will determine its role and provide appropriate input as the project moves from the initial feasibility through the site plan approval process to construction layout and certification.


Using the site plan and topographic survey along with architectural plans, Van Harten will generate a detailed Site Grading Plan for the development that will establish building elevations and overall surface drainage patterns in both parking and landscaped areas.


A Site Servicing Drawing will be prepared in conjunction with the Site Grading Plan to illustrate service connections between the building and municipal services. This plan will also provide the internal connections between manholes and catch basins.


The Site Grading and Site Servicing design will be accompanied by an engineered stormwater management design brief that will illustrates the drainage catchment areas for pipe sizing and provide pre and post development stormwater modelling for the site that meets the runoff criteria provided by the local municipality or conservation authority.


With developments located within environmentally sensitive areas, there is often concern with loose soil being washed away from the construction site into the natural environment. Once the site engineering design is completed, details with respect to sediment and erosion control are provided on the plan for review and approval by the conservation authority and municipality.


With any site that has cutting and filling operations, Van Harten is able to use topographic data of existing elevations along with engineering design of proposed elevations to calculate the shortage or surplus of material. Local fill alteration by-laws require that an applicant submit a detailed site plan that illustrates the area to be filled as well as the volume of material to be placed. Van Harten will prepare engineering drawings that include areas and volumes of fill material, stages of filling, haul routes, scaled cross-sections of the filing area and sediment and erosion control features.


With all new construction in areas where a municipal sewer is not available, the permit process requires the design of a private septic system or sewage system.

Engineers from Van Harten will witness test pits at the site to evaluate soil and groundwater conditions. We are very familiar with the advanced sewage treatment technologies and can consult with you regarding the use of a conventional septic tank system versus an advanced tertiary treatment system or Level IV treatment system.

The site and grading plan is used as a base plan for the preferred sewage design and is accompanied by an engineering report that is suitable for permit application. This work provides our client with an objective solution that suits their needs and allows them to obtain quotations from installing contractors. Inspections are then carried out at the time of installation to certify that the system was installed as per the approved design.

As a requirement of the Ontario Building Code (OBC), most building renovations and additions in unserviced areas trigger a review and assessment of an existing septic system as part of the building permit process to ensure that the system meets today’s design standards. Van Harten will conduct an objective review of your system and provide engineering recommendations for future servicing suitable for permit application and approval.

With various commercial sites, restaurants and campgrounds where sewage flows exceed 10,000 L, an application to the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) is required in order to obtain an Environmental Compliance Approval (ECA). Referencing a topographic survey of the development, engineering staff from Van Harten will provide consulting services and design work leading to an application for approval.


The engineering team at Van Harten provides municipal engineering for residential development.

This work generally varies from multi-lot rural developments serviced by private water wells and sewage systems created by a severance process to smaller infill subdivision developments that have full municipal services. The engineering design is based on our topographic survey and will coincide with the subdivision plan or condominium plan. This work can include contract preparation, tendering, construction layout, site inspection and project administration.



Often with urban and rural residential developments, the municipality will require a drainage certificate or as-built grading plan to ensure that the lot was graded in accordance with the approved site plan. Once the foundation is backfilled and dwelling construction is close to completion, Van Harten often provides grade stake layout to help ensure that the lot is graded in conformance with the approved grading plan. After grading and landscaping is complete, a survey crew will visit your property to record elevations and provide the necessary engineering certification.


With larger commercial and industrial developments, engineering site inspections are often required by the municipality to ensure that the site grading, site servicing and stormwater management facilities comply with the approved engineering design. Engineering staff will conduct inspections during different stages of construction to provide certification upon completion. If necessary, a survey crew will visit your property after grading and landscaping is complete to record elevations and provide an as-built topographic survey.


Engineering staff conduct site inspections with the contractor and building officials at the time of installation to ensure that the sewage system is installed in accordance with the approved design. We provide engineering certification to you and to the town along with a layout of the installed system that highlights any changes that were made.

Contact us today to get a quote!

Whether you know exactly what you are looking for or need some help with the next steps, we invite you to please reach out to us at Van Harten.