Leading experts in land surveying, civil engineering, and resource management planning, Cuttriss Consultants, say drone technology for land surveying is the way of the future.

Equipped with two models of drone, Cuttriss have been using this technology since August 2017 to complete detailed surveys for a variety of projects and say that the time and cost savings for clients speak for itself.

As one of the few companies in the lower North Island to have Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) certified pilots in the air, Cuttriss’ use of drone technology allows them to affordably and accurately measure client’s sites. The technology allows sites to be measured remotely which ensures the safety of all personnel.


The CAA, which oversees the use of airspace and sets the rules for drone users, must certify pilots to fly in certain areas or projects, or if they want to fly outside of the CAA rules. Cuttriss’ pilots have been assessed for competency in accordance with the CAA requirements, showing they can operate responsibly and safely.

With this new technology, Cuttriss can map within hours a site which could have taken days using conventional surveying. The drone generates 3D models which enables a visual record of the project works as they take place.

Drone technology Cuttriss, land surveying

The multi-disciplinary firm, which boasts a proud 70-year history in the industry, is also now able to map areas while providing minimal obstructions to the public. Recently, this drone technology meant a survey of Kapiti Road for the Kapiti Coast District Council was able to be undertaken with little interruption to motorists.

Cuttriss drone pilot and senior licensed cadastral surveyor Nick Taylor says traditionally, the job would require Cuttriss to partially close the road, causing delays and frustrations for motorists.

“With the use of this technology we were able complete the job in a matter of hours without any disruption to the traffic. The final output we produced means the site can now be visualised by anyone. We are now able to complete surveys of sites which would have been cost prohibitive or inaccessible due to health and safety requirements.”

Taylor says the industry is always evolving as technology drives improvements to efficiency and outputs.

“As we move towards an increasingly digital world (for better or worse), we will see our client’s needs change. 2D paper plans will become less relevant and we will need to consider new ways of facilitating the use of survey information. We will need to ensure the data we produce can integrate with a range of other applications across different industries.” Taylor says. 


Celebrating 70 years in the industry, Cuttriss Consultants are leading experts in land surveying, civil engineering and resource management planning in New Zealand. Working with a range of stakeholders, including; business owners, developers, local Councils, central government agencies and local Iwi, Cuttriss Consultants take pride in creating thoughtful, socially and environmentally conscious spaces. At the forefront of significant projects including the Aotea and Waikanae North housing subdivisions, as well as the relocation of Saint Patricks / Our Lady of Kapiti School. Cuttriss is working to build mutually beneficial relationships with our local communities.