Print Page | Contact Us | Sign In | Join Now!
Tell a Friend About This EventTell a Friend

DCALS all-day seminar . . . . .

When: 11/08/2019
From 7:00 AM until 5:00 PM
Where: Catholic University Pryzbyla Conference Center
620 Michigan Avenue, N.E.
Washington, District of Columbia  20064
United States
Presenter: There are multiple presenters and they are listed below.
Contact: DCALS Event Coordinator

Online registration is closed.
« Go to Upcoming Event List  

Please join us Friday November 8, 2019 at Catholic University Conference Center for a new 8-credit professional seminar. Featured will be sessions on ALTA SURVEYS IN DC, plus GPS AND DATUMS IN DC. We’ll also cover landmark DC cases on RIPARIAN BOUNDARIES & TITLE.  And PROFESSIONAL ETHICS credits are now needed for license renewals. Mandatory Continuing Education recently took effect in the District of Columbia. These courses fully meet DC’s new requirements.

DCALS is the only organization teaching District of Columbia boundary law and surveying. This seminar will benefit everyone who deals with property lines, land titles or technical survey issues in DC. It’s recommended for individuals seeking licenses. Certificates for 8-Continuing Education Credit Hours will be awarded - valid for land surveyors and civil engineers in DC and all surrounding states. Please join us.

ALTA SURVEYS IN DC . . . ALTA / NSPS Land Title Surveys are prepared and issued every day in Washington DC. Multimillion-dollar land developments rely on them. Yet, do some of ALTA’s new 2016 Standards even apply here - in an early American city with conflicting official boundary dimensions, no coordinate system for property lines, confusing survey records, scarce monumentation and unconventional boundary practices? 

How many surveyors in DC check property markers by ‘the length of the semi-major axis, expressed in feet or meters, of the error ellipse representing the uncertainty due to random errors in measurements in the location of the monument?’ Can Relative Positional Precision be certified at a ‘95 percent confidence level’ in a city like Washington? And how ’Optional’ is Table A, when DC lawyers demand all 20 items?

There are good ALTA seminars given by national experts. None of them ever teach city ALTAs. Steve Jones, a 40-year Washington area surveyor with CPJ Associates, will explain how to prepare accurate, certifiable ALTA Surveys in dense urban environments like Washington DC.

GPS and DATUMS IN DC . . . Never let it be said that Washington DC has no survey control. This city was Federal for 180 years. Survey monuments abound, set by an alphabet-soup of agencies USC&GS, USGS, NGS, PB&PP, WMATA, NPS, USED, WSSC, DCH&T and DCSO to name a few.

But they were done in multiple datums over many generations. Metro was built using four or five datums, which have all been readjusted. In 2022 the datum changes again. What control works with what?

GPS is used today on all large projects. DC has many of those. Tight control is critical horizontally and vertically. In recent years both WMATA and the enormous ‘Clean Rivers’ Tunnel Project have done excellent work to resolve datum and control issues across the region. Don Falken, Metro’s chief surveyor for more than three decades, will guide us through this important subject.

RIPARIAN RIGHTS AND TITLE . . .  Some of America’s most fundamental riparian principles came out of landmark Washington DC court cases. Who owns a riverbed? How about a creek? Who owns the water? Where is the line between DC and Virginia? If an island pops up in the Potomac, can somebody claim it? Can shoreline properties own part of a river? And those early Lots and Squares platted out in the Anacostia – are they valid? They’re on the official approved Plan of Washington.

These and other riparian legal questions have been litigated in Washington DC for centuries. One lawsuit took 130 years. In addition to court decisions, there are Harbor Engineer regulations, Wharfing Rights, Bulkhead Lines, Pierhead Limits and special exceptions. Retired surveyor Chas Langelan will try to ‘navigate’ through the lessons for land surveyors from riparian cases back to the founding of Washington.

PROFESSIONAL ETHICS FOR DC SURVEYORS AND ENGINEERS . . . Did you know the District of Columbia has an official Code of Professional Conduct for all licensed surveyors and engineers? It’s a published regulation with the force of law. And on August 2, 2019, Mandatory Continuing Education was enacted in DC. It took effect that day. From now on DC land surveyors need 12 credit-hours every licensing renewal, and engineers need 20. One of those credits must be Professional Ethics.

DC Surveyor Rick Dreist, in his 21 years at the helm of DC Surveyors Office, has seen more than his share of questionable professional conduct. Most of the worst offenders have been lawyers, developers or government employees. But he’s also had issues with certain surveyors and engineers, usually over fraudulent or incompetent work. He doesn’t hesitate reporting offenders to DC’s Licensing Board. Rick will explain the regulations and give examples of conflicts surveyors and engineers should avoid.

Seminar Details at a Glance . . .


               620 Michigan Avenue, NE, Washington DC 20064

 Seminar Agenda
7:00am - 8:15am  Registration Desk Open – Hot Breakfast - Morning Announcements                   
8:15am - 9:55am  ALTA SURVEYS IN DC - Steve Jones, Prof. LS
9:55am - 10:15am  Morning Break with Refreshments
10:15am - NOON
NOON - 1:00pm  LUNCH – FEAST for hungry surveyors!
1:00pm - 2:40pm  RIPARIAN RIGHTS AND TITLEChas Langelan, DC RLS (retired)
2:40pm - 3:00pm  Afternoon Break with Refreshments
3:00pm - 4:40pm  PROFESSIONAL ETHICS Rick Dreist, DCSO ,RLS
4:40pm - 5:00pm  Outcome Measures and Continuing Education Certificates


















CREDITS:   8- Professional Development Hours (PDHs); equivalent to
                    8- CE/CPC Unit Credit Hours (DC/MD/VA);

‘Early-Bird’ registrations, received before midnight Sunday NOVEMBER 3, 2019 . . .

             DCALS Members . . . $249           Non-members . . . $299
             ($50 Additional for registrations received after midnight Sunday November 3, 2019.)

Free secure all-day parking is available for every attendee who wishes to drive. The conference center uses the ‘O’Boyle’ parking lot at the north end of campus. Seminar registrants will be emailed parking directions, map and instructions of how to obtain a Catholic University issued parking pass by November 6th. Parking passes must be obtained on-line from Catholic University prior to arrival at the seminar on November 8th. Parking passes will not be available at the check-in desk on the day of the seminar.

OVERNIGHT ACCOMMODATIONS:  None provided. Catholic University is conveniently served by Metro’s Red Line BROOKLAND-CUA station – right at the corner of campus. It’s a short walk to the conference center. DCALS strongly encourages everyone to come by Metro. Attendees from out of town should arrange their own overnight accommodations wherever best for them. Travel in on Metro.

‘Land Surveying in the District of Columbia’ – DCALS Manual . . .

AVAILABLE FOR SALE at our seminar will be DCALS’ 2017 edition of “LAND SURVEYING in the DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA.” Packed with useful information, this is the only book published on DC surveying. DCALS’ new updated 2017 Manual will be - $130 for members, $160 for non-members.

  • STEVE JONES, Prof. LS, licensed in three states, has nearly 40-years experience performing all types of difficult surveys in the Washington metropolitan area. He’s Division Manager of Surveys at Charles P. Johnson & Associates, where he’s directed hundreds of urban ALTA Surveys. A DCALS Charter Member, Steve is a past-president of MSS and a long-time member of VAS and NSPS.

  • DON FALKEN, Prof. LS, Senior Program Manager at WMATA, was Metro’s chief surveyor for 32-years, responsible for some of the most advanced survey & mapping projects in the world. A New Jersey native with a degree from Fairleigh Dickerson University, Don has more than 40-years experience with large projects and high-order control. He’s a DCALS Charter Member and past-president.

  • RICK DRIEST, RLS  is the official Surveyor of the District of Columbia. After 21 years directing the DC Surveyors Office, he’s one of the District government’s most senior, expert and respected officials. A licensed surveyor in Virginia and DC, Rick is a DCALS Charter Member and has served as DC’s NSPS Governor (now Director) since before the society was founded.

  • CHAS LANGELAN, RLS,  is a retired professional land surveyor who practiced more than 40 years in Maryland and the District of Columbia. He ran a busy survey office on Capitol Hill before retiring in 2008. A charter officer of DCALS, he’s one of only two individuals (along with DC Surveyor Rick Dreist) to have served continuously on DCALS’ Board of Directors since its founding in 2001.

2017-LAND SURVEYING IN DC - Event Promotion

2017-LAND SURVEYING IN DC - Event Promotion