Last updated:

August 2, 2017

What do I need to know?

  • location and suburb of the property (to identify it firstly on an index plan and then on subsequent maps).

  • A set of numbers that can only be found on the master index plan for your area (to order plans and Survey Field Books).

How do I search?

Follow the steps below to get the information you need to order the plan through our online catalogue. The plans were produced at 3 different scales or resolutions for different time periods (Step 2 to 5). The final step will help you to access the original Survey Field Books that created the plans.

About these records

The Melbourne and Metropolitan Board of Works (now Melbourne Water) was established in 1891. From that time, as part of their work laying water and sewerage connections, they created detailed plans of houses and other buildings in the Melbourne metropolitan area.  The collection of plans and Field Books allow researchers to track the physical layout of older buildings on metropolitan properties.

The layout of buildings on properties changed over time.  When this happened, surveyors made new sketches in Field Books, older buildings were erased from the base plans and newer ones were drawn in. 

Who created these records?

Melbourne Water Corporation [known as Melbourne and Metropolitan Board of Works to 1992]  VA 1007


Next Steps

Plans can be viewed in the public Reading Room once ordered through the catalogue. 

What are in these records?

There are several sets of plans and a collection of Field or Level Books. 

  • Sketched building layouts in small Field Books
  • Detailed base plans (or DP plans) at a scale of 40 feet to an inch
  • Water supply plans
  • Drainage plans
  • Sewerage plans
  • Record plans at a scale of 160 feet to an inch
  • Index maps to keep track of the record and base plans