Skip to main content

Consulting Engineers

Are you a consulting engineer looking for utility searches?

Cornerstone Projects play an important part in helping Consulting and Civil Engineers provide their expert advice on the design, planning and management of infrastructure and construction projects.

As the lead on a project, it is important for the Consulting Engineer to have detailed utility plans of the site in preparation for design and general health and safety. Knowing the whereabouts of the utilities can save them time and cost in the design phase as the location of the existing utilities may well determine what is possible.

Not all Consulting Engineers are geared up to administrate the plans internally so they call upon Cornerstone to take care of this. Outsourcing can improve cost efficiencies, speed up the completion of utility reports, improve the quality of their searches and free their staff up to focus on higher value jobs.

How Cornerstone can help

  • Cornerstone supply a basic search that will cover the requirements of the Health and Safety Executive.
  • We can also supply a full Cable and Independent Utilities search if required in city/urban areas.
  • Basic searches are generally returned within 1-5 working days and cable searches within 7-10 working days.
  • Completed searches are presented in a simple to read and accessible .pdf format.
  • No obligation quotes are available instantly on-line and confirmed back via email within 20 minutes.
  • We can also provide a CAD drawing service to enable the utilities to be added to other CAD reports and providing an overview of the site showing all the utilities present.
  • We can now also produce a PDF from the CAD drawing that enables you to see an overview in .pdf and turn different utility layers on and off.

What does a basic search cover?

  • Our basic search covers the main utilities, however, you can opt to remove services if you already have plans.
  • Cable and Independent Utilities options are available if required.
  • Our standard search covers up to 200m around a point.
  • We cover projects of any size.


Why use Cornerstone?

  • Speed is of the essence to ensure there are NO delays to your projects.
  • The way we process our searches, there will be no one quicker than us.
  • Some basic searches will be back within 1 working day, with a UK average of 3 working days.
  • We provide the fastest search possible and will not entice you with promises of more expensive, faster searches when they are simply NOT achievable.
  • We offer an additional “Instant Access plans” service where we will share individual plans as they come in.
  • With a cable search (that tends to take longer), for a small fee of £5+VAT, you can order an ‘interim pack’ containing the main utilities once they have been received.
  • For high volume users, we even offer a GIS mapping library for managing and posting searches to improve access for your employees when in the field.

Easy to use

The key to the success is the speed and efficiency of reporting and making sure that the right information is given to the right person in the correct format.

  • Our online ordering system allows quotes and orders to be processed within minutes
  • The system is secure and has fail-safe checks to ensure the right search location is covered.


We understand that keeping costs to a minimum is extremely important.

  • Our fees start at £58.00+Vat plus disbursements.
  • All disbursements are charged at cost (we are transparent in our pricing and only make our margin from our fees).
  • For statutory undertakers (or those working on their behalf), we may be able to request plans for free with the appropriate letters of authority.
  • Comparing the cost of outsourcing to us vs. the resource required in-house may surprise you!


Frequently Asked Questions

What are utility searches for consulting engineers?

For consulting engineers, utility searches act as a vital information-gathering step during project planning and design. They involve precisely locating and mapping underground infrastructure such as electricity cables, gas pipes, water mains, and sewer lines.

Why are utility searches important for consulting engineers?

Utility searches are crucial for consulting engineers as they enable informed design decisions by revealing the exact location of utilities, proactively mitigate safety risks and costly disruptions during construction, ensure cost-effectiveness by avoiding unforeseen damage, and guarantee regulatory compliance, safeguarding against legal issues and project delays.

In what situations would consulting engineers require utility searches?

Consulting engineers require utility searches in various situations, including:

  • Site development projects: This encompasses tasks like designing new buildings, roads, or landscaping, all of which necessitate knowledge of underground infrastructure for optimal planning.
  • Infrastructure upgrades: Upgrading existing infrastructure like water treatment plants or power grids requires knowledge of existing utility locations to ensure seamless integration and avoid disruptions.
  • Renovation projects: Even seemingly minor renovations can involve potential interactions with buried utilities, necessitating a search to inform safe and efficient execution.
  • Feasibility studies: When assessing the viability of a project on a specific site, understanding the existing utility landscape is crucial for informed decision-making.

In essence, utility searches are an essential investment for consulting engineers, enabling informed design choices, mitigating risks, ensuring cost-effectiveness, and guaranteeing regulatory compliance across a wide range of project types.