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Right of Way marker?

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While out searching benchmarks today I came upon this post where the topo map noted a vert control mark (which I never did find). I presume R/W chiseled into the concrete denotes "Right of Way" but I haven't seen other similar structures in this neck of the woods (Kent County, SW Michigan). No listing @ geocaching.com. Any other ideas?

 

Thanks!

 

70e03ef5-f0ad-4694-9384-a33ee1675b87.jpg

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It looks like a right-of-way marker to me. 'R/W' is a fairly standard abbreviation. There was a period of time (the 30's & 40's I think) where the State of California identified their right-of-ways with similar, but shorter, concrete columns stamped with a 'C'. If you could read the 'C', you were in the right-of-way.

 

I've also seen County line markers that look very similar. This is one on the line between Fresno and Tulare Counties in California.

 

Tulare County side (looking into Fresno County)

25945_1900.JPG

 

Fresno County side (looking into Tulare County)

25945_2000.JPG

 

- Kewaneh

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Generally, a right-of-way marker will not appear in the database, except as a "reference point" for finding a benchmark. However, there are exceptions, such as when a R/W marker is used as a support monument for a survey point. In these cases, something is added to the R/W monument to indicate the precise spot to be used by surveyors.

 

Often, this takes the form of a disk which is mounted on top of the R/W marker. But this one is an interesting variation!

 

-Paul-

Edited by PFF

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Kewaneh:

This is one on the line between Fresno and Tulare Counties in California.

 

Where is this right of way marker? I'll be in the Central Valley in June and would like to see if for myself!

 

cjf

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Generally, a right-of-way marker will not appear in the database, except as a "reference point" for finding a benchmark. However, there are exceptions, such as when a R/W marker is used as a support monument for a survey point. In these cases, something is added to the R/W monument to indicate the precise spot to be used by surveyors.

 

Yeah, that's what I figured. The other faces of the monument are all smooth - no evidence of previous disk/rivet/etc.

 

Thanks, all.

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I've seen several of those R/W markers for Michigan, and they have all been on the state line at the property line edges of the State Routes in SE Michigan.

 

MD2009 would be an example, the third photo in my log for that benchmark shows the R/W marker. The other two photos are of the type of granite marker used to survey the Michigan/Ohio border, which in this case is MD2009.

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I've seen several of those R/W markers for Michigan, and they have all been on the state line at the property line edges of the State Routes in SE Michigan.

 

 

Unfortunately, this statement could be confusing to the original poster. May I contribute some additional information?

 

There are three types of objects at MD2009.

 

*The R/W markers, themselves, are not loggable survey marks. As explained earlier, they are simply reference points for finding MD2009.

 

*The State Line monument was set by surveyors working for the Michigan/Ohio Boundary Commission. However, that alone does not make it a loggable object. Throughout the United States, most state-line markers are not in the NGS data base.

 

*The third object at the site is a drill hole in top of the state line monument. This is the same situation I described previously, where a "sinker" was inserted into a R/W marker to indicate a precise survey point--after which the host object was added to the NGS data base.

 

I hope this is helpful to those who are new to the hobby and are trying to figure out what they found, and whether they can log it.

 

-Paul-

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Thats a typical highway Right of Way marker used in Michigan for decades. There are/were tens of thousands of them all over the state on just about every road built, at jogs in R/W, where section lines intersect the R/W, at location of c/l control points for highway alignment to reference location, etc. Many have succumbed to development and damage by utilities and property owners. They were placed as part of the road project, their location determined by MDSH/MDOT surveyors and placed by the construction company building the road. They were used for new roads. They don't use them anymore.

 

fyi - The location of these are not very reliable at times. Seems that if no one was watching the contractor place them, they sometimes did of poor job of placing them correctly. Also the plans will show that the R/W is always placed on the R/W, not on the private property, meaning either the back or one of the rear corners is marking the R/W, not the center of the post. We only used them for evidence but never without confirming evidence. Without the highway plans they are useless for determining anything more then general R/W.

Edited by Z15

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Z15 wrote:

The R/W [monument] is always placed on the R/W, not on the private property, meaning either the back or one of the rear corners is marking the R/W, not the center of the post.

 

I'd not thought of that before, but it makes sense. Thanks for passing along this info.

 

-Paul-

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If it were placed on property line, it would become the property owners property also. Like building your fence on the property line, once you do that, its not your fence anymore, the courts will rule it now belongs to both of you which can cause all kinds of problems.

 

Even fencing you see along the highways (in Michigan) for sure, they are built on state land, not on the boundary line for the very reason above, joint ownership and legal problems.

Edited by Z15

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If it were placed on property line, it would become the property owners property also. Like building your fence on the property line, once you do that, its not your fence anymore, the courts will rule it now belongs to both of you which can cause all kinds of problems.

 

When I did cadastral mapping for Cook county here in Illinois, a good portion of the changes were 1 inch shifts for fence line disputes.

 

Brendan

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Kewaneh:

This is one on the line between Fresno and Tulare Counties in California.

 

Where is this right of way marker? I'll be in the Central Valley in June and would like to see if for myself!

 

cjf

 

It is located at approximately 36° 32.69'N, 119° 30.20'W (NAD83/WGS84), on Cole Avenue/Road 32 just south of Mountain View Avenue/Avenue 416 (Fresno County Names their roads; Tulare County numbers them.)

 

If memory serves, there is another similar county line monument located at approximately 36° 33.36'N, 119° 29.39'W (NAD83/WGS84).

 

These are both easy to find. They are about 6"-8" thick, 40" high, and adjacent to the road.

 

- Kewaneh

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Here are a couple photos of a Right Of Way marker in Ohio. First time I have run across this type of marker in Ohio. Was out looking for a BM the other day (never did find it, I think its under the road now), and came across this ROW marker. It was sitting in the top of a concrete cylinder extending about 10 inches above grade and leaning heavily to the north.

 

ROW 1

 

ROW 2

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We went for a short drive on Sunday and I was seeing all of these Right Of Way posts a long way off on the other side of the fence. But, I knew I had seen a couple close to the currant highway. This is what we got pictures of. They are along Highway 89A (The New one) and ...

 

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in between the front ROW post and the one with the white arrow pointing to it, is where the Old Road had been at one time. No remnant of the Road remains except these every now and then and some great old benchmarks (when you can figure out where they are).

 

Note; The far post is referenced by a benchmark close by.

 

Here is another view of the ROW posts without the arrow, so you can get a feel for the area.

 

1aa21b94-fd61-4e2b-b215-49ef731b203f.jpg

 

Shirley~

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I know in some states (like Georgia, for example), there are two sets of ROW markers on each side of state highways. The first, closer one, usually mars the property boundary of the road itself. The farther one marks the end of the easement of the property.

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Along the older roads like US Route 45 in Illinois you may see a number of ROW markers. In Illinois they are still used as a fairly accurate boundry marker to set the line between the area IDOT (Illinois Department of Transportation) maintains and the landowner. Almost all landowners still maintain the grass and land past the ROW marker and right up to the roadway edge, but legally the space between the ROW marker and the pavement is the property of the state. These come in handy when IDOT or another entity has to dig, trench, construct etc. close to the road. If it is a planned job they will survey out the ROW - but in an emegency the ROW marker makes it easy to know when you are runniong your equipment on the land owners front lawn and not on the state highway. The ROW has changed in many areas since the ROW markers were placed and the markers are not moved to reflect that change most of the time so even this can be a gamble. Like most states many of the markers are beat up by landowners or in this area mostly by farm implements.

 

As mentioned earlier they are generally NOT used for surveying with the exception of a benchmark for a specific construction job. When I worked for the DOT 15+ years ago they often wanted a "permenate" structure to inscribe an "X" on to use as a benchmark for surveying. The ROW marker was a good item for this since they were not moved very often and people were used to working around them. Engineers would shoot measurments from the nearest benchmark or if lucky a principal meridian (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Principal_meridian) back to this ROW / benchmark and then all of the survey measurments for the construction job came off that benchmark. A little math to figure in the offset from the jobsite benchmark to the principal meridian or public benchmark would locate all the points of the construction site on the big map - so to say. If you REALLY wanted to piss off an engineer you found his construction zone benchmark and moved it a few inches one way or another just before they did the survey for the job site, but building a bridge that was 6 inches off to one side of the roadway is not that funny - so resist the urge. Of course with GPS - there is little need to make the offset benchmark any more.

 

I was thinking about a few chaches using ROW markers. I may do that this summer!

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I have been curious about the origin of the many ROW markers near my home in Will County, Illinois. Do you know when and by whom these markers were set? State route 59 between Plainfield and Naperville has many ROW markers along the east side, in good condition and easily visible. As a guess, they have a CCC or WPA "look" to them.

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Funny that this thread would happen to be revived today, since I was looking at a Michigan Right of Way marker just like the one in the first post earlier today.

 

1006123f.jpg

 

As far as who places the marks, I would think it would be the local state's Department of Transportation, since presumably they would be the ones that own the right of way property.

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No. They were placed by the contractor who built the road under the direction of the state highway project engineer. It was a pay item and mandated on projects where federal $ were involved. That practice has long since been abandoned (back in the 70's) as a project requirement. The locations were surveyed by the project engineers stake out crews but rarely did anyone check on the contractor that he placed it in the correct location, close enough was good enough back then. We only used them as evidence but never accepted them as gospel as we found many that were out of place from 1ft to several ft. Sometimes even property owners moved them and those suckers are heavy and about 4-6 ft long.

 

They were to be set so the back or a back corner was on the row. They were supposed to be on the ROW so the property owner could not claim ownership of the monument. Some property owners had surveyors come in and prove it was on their property so they could remove them as an eyesore. We came upon one owner who had about a 1/2 mile of road frontage and pulled everyone out with his tractor because he hit one once making hay. You could see them pilled up in his rock pile.

Edited by Z15

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