Plat vs. Survey – What’s the Difference? 

“Plat” and “Survey” are two terms that are often used interchangeablably, however there are differences between the two.  

What they have in common:

  • They are both a depiction of a tract of land
  • They can show a very small tract or a very large tract
  • They both show the dimensions of the property
  • They both show the location of the property (county, land lot, district, abutting streets etc.) 

How they differ:

A survey

  • show any dwellings, buildings or improvements (driveways, fences, pools) located on the property
  • usually only shows one lot or a limited number of lots
  • usually only for the personal use of the owner of the property

A plat

  • usually shows the dimensions of the property before the improvements are made
  • cover more than one lot or parcel of land - For example: a developer will have a plat of an entire subdivision drawn
  • drawn in order to be recorded at the courthouse for public use

SUBDIVISION OR PLAT REQUEST Process (90-120 days)

  1. Pre-application meeting
  2. Application Filing
  3. Staff/DRC review
  4. Public Hearing Notice
  5. Planning Commission Review & Recommendation
  6. City Council Review & Decision

If the City is asked to abandon a public right-of-way, recorded plat or public utility easement so the land can be put to another use.  The process, accomplished by city ordinance, is called vacation.  The vacation of streets, alleys and plats is done under the authority of the City Council following a review by DRC & private utilities and a recommendation of approval or denial by the Planning Commission.

VACATION REQUEST Process (90-120 days)

  1. Pre-application meeting
  2. Application Filing
  3. Staff/DRC review
  4. Notice of intent to vacate to the City Council
  5. Public Hearing Notice
  6. Planning Commission Review & Recommendation
  7. City Council Review & Decision