Architectural surveys fall into two general classifications: intensive and reconnaissance levels. Both types have a place, depending on the amount of information to be collected, the time and budget available, and the geographic dispersion of the resources. Reconnsissance level surveys are the most common and are typically used for Section 106 consultation, and initial survey work in a previously undocumented area.
Reconnaissance surveys are visual or predictive surveys that identify the general distribution, location and nature of cultural resources within a given area. A reconnaissance survey of the built environment generally entails the field identification of resources that appear to meet broad survey requirements. Documentation at this level rarely exceeds property address, observational information on architectural style and features, and photographic information. However, it may be possible to discern if the property appears to be a unique resource based on the observations of the overall survey area and this information should be recorded in the “Statement of Significance” section of the database. Reconnaissance surveys are often conducted to establish the boundaries for intensive surveys to follow.
Reconnaissance surveys consist of walking around an area and noting the general distribution of buildings, structures, and neighborhoods representing different architectural styles, periods and modes of construction. Reconnaissance level survey forms must still be completed on the electronic Wisaard. Because reconnaissance surveys record only observable information, they may not provide sufficient information with which to make determinations of eligibility beyond architectural significance.
A reconnaissance level survey should include the following:
A reconnaissance level survey does not need to include the following:
Intensive level survey and evaluation combines a reconnaissance survey with an evaluation by a trained professional. Intensive survey involves in-depth archival research and field-work to record properties in the survey area. For all types of intensive survey and evaluation projects, the objective is to gather sufficient information to recommend proposed significance or non-significance of the investigated properties and develop historic contexts in terms of National Register of Historic Places listing. An intensive level survey should include the completion of all of the fields on the database and would consist of research on the property beyond what can be noted from the street.
A intensive level survey should include all of the information required for a reconnaissance level survey plus the following:
If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact Kim Gant at 360-586-3074 or at Kim.Gant@dahp.wa.gov.