The horizontal datum in use by the
City is NAD83/98 (North American Datum of 1983/98). In 2004, the City hired
professional surveyors to establish a primary network of seven highly
accurate control monuments tied to the National Geodetic Survey (NGS). In
the few years following, these NGS monuments were used as a base to densify
and expand the network. This current datum is the base for survey work done
for our capital improvement projects and other miscellaneous projects. The
Monuments with Reported Coordinate Values in NAD83/98 Report (3.8MB PDF)
is a comprehensive list that includes the NAD83/98 coordinates from all of
Modernization of Horizontal Datum to NAD83/98
In 2007, the
Record of Survey for the City of Bellingham's 2005 Horizontal Control
Network (4.2MB PDF)
was filed with the Whatcom County Auditor and is now on record with the DNR
Public Land Survey Office. The Survey documents a survey control network of
over 600 points in and around the City, depicted in the City's
NAD83/98 Control Network Survey Map (2MB PDF). This event was the
culmination of a four-year project to update the City from the 1973
Cadastral Survey datum (close to NAD27) to a current datum consistent with
the Port, County, State, and Federal agencies.
PHASE I: First Order Geodetic Survey & NGS Blue Book process
- 2004: Established seven primary control stations for the network
and contracted with a professional surveyor who established the
monuments, performed the control survey and submitted the data to
the National Geodetic Survey (NGS).
- 2005: Data was published by the NGS, which is available via the
NGS Datasheet Page.
PHASE II: Densify the NGS network by establishing local control
points and divided the City and vicinity into nine areas, targeting
existing PLSS sectional monumentation and right-of-way intersection
monuments and setting new reference monuments off of the roadways in
heavy-traffic situations (both GPS and conventional survey methods were
- 2005-2007: All nine densification areas were completed.
- October 2007: Record of survey prepared and filed (combined effort
of all three surveyors).
Survey Control Network for Waterfront Redevelopment Site
In 2008, the
Waterfront Control Record of Survey (420K PDF) was completed. The
Survey, conducted in and around the New Whatcom Waterfront Redevelopment
site using the NAD83/98 Horizontal Datum and the NAVD88 Vertical Datum,
provides a common basis for use in all phases of the waterfront
redevelopment. The goal was to provide access to convenient and intervisible
reference points for use by all surveyors participating in the redevelopment
over an extended period of time. The Survey provides an explanation of the
relationship between the NAVD88 Datum and City of Bellingham, NGVD29, Tidal
Those results are also displayed in the interactive
Waterfront Survey Control Network Map (300K PDF), which provides
links to the individual survey mark reports.