As we near our 10 year anniversary in April, let’s talk about our roots.

Metro Consulting Services had its beginnings almost 10 years ago when we started as a survey company. In March of 2009 Jeff, Brad, and Owen officially started Metro Consulting Associates. Early on, Owen and Brad kept working on telecom projects while Jeff was pounding the pavement letting the world know of his change and “getting the band back together.” Ambulance chasers comes to mind regarding our methods of finding any and all survey projects in the early days of MCA. It was a normal day to send out 12-15 faxed proposals, yes FAXED.

Finally, a few months later we landed our first significant project which allowed us to hire our first crew chief: Chad Marthey. Jeff and Brad had sold Chad on joining the MCA team with the promise of keeping the good things they had learned in the past and ditching the not so good. They were going to build the company that each of them had always wanted and do it their way. (Later that year, Damon Garrett, PE joined the firm to add engineering services to our portfolio; these 5 founding members are still at MCA and are still leading the firm as we get ready for the next decade!)

Mobile Survey Office

Innovation and technology have been a cornerstone of MCA’s growth from the beginning. The team lead with one-man survey crews equipped with GPS, a robotic total station, laptop, printers etc., all out of a survey truck. This meant crews wouldn’t report to the office every morning and night, which was the norm at the time.

Before they knew it, MCA had completed multiple projects, including: topographic, boundary, and ALTA surveys; construction staking jobs in the Midwest; as well as starting work on an underground parking structure in Ann Arbor. MCA then landed the first Master Services Agreement with Marathon Pipeline. That enabled MCA to bring back another “band member,” Brian Curley. Not only had most of MCA’s team worked with Brian previously, many had been trained by Brian when they were college interns.

Like many startup companies, the initial team wore many hats. Owen found himself having to play IT, printer/plotter expert as well as learn Civil 3D on the fly. Still chasing jobs daily, many times Chad would not know what tomorrow would bring but somehow, they’d scrape up 8 hours for him each day. One adventure saw Chad and Jeff drive 24 hours to Texas to complete a pipeline survey for a client (in an old F150 with 300k miles that probably shouldn’t have left the county let alone the state).

Both Jeff and Brad spent countless days in the horse pastures and mountains of Kentucky working on multiple pipeline projects. Owen would make an occasional appearance when he could be away from the office. This continued, adding more projects, more technology, and more team members.

Fast forward 10 years…

The MCA Survey Group has grown far past the foundation of Owen, Chad and Brad. Survey has grown to 30+ staff members across 5 offices. Survey has been involved in hundreds of jobs extending as far away as Oklahoma and Florida. We’ve completed projects on the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers, in the Appalachian Mountains, in the swamps of Alabama, Florida and Georgia, across the rolling blue grass of Kentucky and everywhere in between. The types of projects include wind & solar farms, electric transmission & substations, underground pipeline, infrastructure & municipal, and land development.

Always adaptive and nimble, Survey has expanded into the latest technology with the addition of Mobile LiDAR, static scanning and a drone. This has increased our productivity and safety!

Click the link to watch a LiDAR flythru

By mounting the LiDAR advanced cameras system on a vehicle, there is the ability move much more quickly and capture much more data than ever before. All while not having to have field staff being put in harm’s way of traffic and other potentially hazardous scenarios.

LiDAR provides an extremely accurate, safe, and efficient method of gathering renderings of right of way, utilities, facilities, building, environment and infrastructure assets that can be extracted and exported to GIS and CAD software.

MCA uses drones for ecological permitting and mitigation analysis, construction progress tracking and analysis, construction phase documentation (time-lapse imagery), and operations and maintenance analysis. It’s a safer and cost effect alternative that’s not limited by gravity. Maintenance workers can get an idea of what they are dealing with before they make the climb.

Static Scan of substation
Static Scan of substation – the circle in the image is where the scanner was set up.
The colors are based on elevation.

The SX-10 Static Scanner is able to capture 360 degree point clouds at the rate of nearly 27,000 points per second! The SX-10 allows a scanning project to be georeferenced in real-time. As a 3D scanner, it can be used to capture millions of points for monitoring, topographic mapping, as-built surveys, electrical substation and pipeline manifold surveys, as well as volumetric surveys, such as stockpiles, mines, and quarries. It also allows data to be accurately captured from a distance; data that would otherwise be unobtainable due to inaccessibility or safety concerns. Projects can be confidently monitored for their duration. The massive amounts of data that the SX-10 quickly and efficiently captures ensures that no changes will go unmeasured.

MCA’s survey beginnings continue into a new decade, supporting and working with our other in-house services: Land Acquisition, Civil Engineering, GIS, Municipal Engineering, Field Services, Ecological, and Planning/Landscape Architecture.

Click to view a brochure of our services!