ColeJ@MerebrookLLC.com (573) 7773564

Definitions
The following are some of the most common definitions used in land surveying.
General
Adjoiner A parcel of land very near or butting up against your parcel of land
Abutter A parcel of land directly in contact with your parcel of land with no space inbetween,
Lot A parcel of land that has passed through a legal subdivision process created by the state and the local jurisdiction
Parcel A generic term for a piece of land
Tract A generic term for a piece of land that sometimes has a legal definition that makes it something other than a lot,
but still having many of the legal characteristics of a lot.
Abutter A parcel of land directly in contact with your parcel of land with no space inbetween,
Lot A parcel of land that has passed through a legal subdivision process created by the state and the local jurisdiction
Parcel A generic term for a piece of land
Tract A generic term for a piece of land that sometimes has a legal definition that makes it something other than a lot,
but still having many of the legal characteristics of a lot.
Area
Acre (ac.) An area of land = 43,560 square feet = 10 square chains (i.e. 1 chain x 10 chains) = about 208.71 feet x 208.71 feet
Distance
Feet (‘, ft.) Depending on where you are, the length of a foot may change. U.S. Feet (most common) and International Feet
(occasionally called for) are the most common in the U.S.
Chain (ch., chn.) A full chain = 66 feet = 100 links = 4 rods
A half chain = 33 feet = 50 links = 2 rods
Beware that occasionally a half chain is erroneously referred to as a ‘full chain’, or simply a ‘chain’
Rod 16.5 feet = 1/4 chain = 25 links
(occasionally called for) are the most common in the U.S.
Chain (ch., chn.) A full chain = 66 feet = 100 links = 4 rods
A half chain = 33 feet = 50 links = 2 rods
Beware that occasionally a half chain is erroneously referred to as a ‘full chain’, or simply a ‘chain’
Rod 16.5 feet = 1/4 chain = 25 links
Curves
Radius (R) The distance from the center point of a curve to the arc of a curve.
Arc (A) Arc length. The distance along a curve. Easily confused with chord length.
Chord Bearing The direction from one end of a curve to the other end of a curve.
(chord, ch)
Chord Length The straightline distance from one end of a curve to the other end of a curve.
(len., ch. len., ch)
Delta (∆) The angular change along a curve, from the beginning of the curve to the end of a curve. It is based on using the radius
point of the curve as the reference point.
Delta = 2 x tangent
Length Arc length. The length of a curve along the arc. It is always longer than the
(L, Len.) chord length. Easily confused with arc length.
Tangent A line that perfectly transitions to a curve. This means that at the point where
(T, tan.) the arc transitions to a straight line (the tangent line), the tangent line is 90° (at a right angle) to the line drawn to the
radius point.
A measurement of the deflection (change in angle) from the tangent line coming into a curve to the endpoint of the
tangent line leaving a curve.
Tangent = 1/2 delta
Arc (A) Arc length. The distance along a curve. Easily confused with chord length.
Chord Bearing The direction from one end of a curve to the other end of a curve.
(chord, ch)
Chord Length The straightline distance from one end of a curve to the other end of a curve.
(len., ch. len., ch)
Delta (∆) The angular change along a curve, from the beginning of the curve to the end of a curve. It is based on using the radius
point of the curve as the reference point.
Delta = 2 x tangent
Length Arc length. The length of a curve along the arc. It is always longer than the
(L, Len.) chord length. Easily confused with arc length.
Tangent A line that perfectly transitions to a curve. This means that at the point where
(T, tan.) the arc transitions to a straight line (the tangent line), the tangent line is 90° (at a right angle) to the line drawn to the
radius point.
A measurement of the deflection (change in angle) from the tangent line coming into a curve to the endpoint of the
tangent line leaving a curve.
Tangent = 1/2 delta