Evaluation of an Emerging Market in Subsurface Utility Engineering Academic Article uri icon


  • Subsurface utility engineering (SUE) is a fast growing industry segment in the civil engineering arena. Subsurface utility engineering is gaining credibility as a significant tool to reduce the risk from informational uncertainty associated with underground facilities in a construction project. Subsurface utility engineering can minimize the risk primarily through mapping existing underground utility facilities, utilizing surface geophysical technologies, surveying and data management systems. This paper presents a comprehensive evaluation of SUE to facilitate a better understanding of this emerging industry by the many in the construction domain that are relatively unfamiliar with it. Topics investigated include quality levels in SUE, incorporation of SUE strategy at different stages in the construction project, and cost-benefit analysis of SUE based on 71 actual construction projects where SUE was employed. In addition, the results obtained from questionnaire surveys of State Departments of Transportation (DOTs) and the SUE industry are analyzed, which reveal the trend of state DOTs in the use of SUE and various aspects of SUE business in private sectors.

published proceedings

  • Journal of Construction Engineering and Management

altmetric score

  • 3

author list (cited authors)

  • Jeong, H. S., Abraham, D. M., & Lew, J. J.

citation count

  • 27

complete list of authors

  • Jeong, Hyung Seok||Abraham, Dulcy M||Lew, Jeffrey J

publication date

  • April 2004