What is Karst?

Karst is a specific type of landscape or topography that forms on limestone from the surface or subsurface removal of rock mass by dissolution of susceptible water soluble minerals. This process forms irregularities on the surface including sinkholes and swallow holes. Other karst features include springs, sinking streams, blind valleys, and caves.

Why do I need a Karst Survey?

The purpose of a karst survey is to identify these distinguishing features prior to construction in order to prevent or minimize the impact of the construction and subsequent property use on the unique subsurface environment.

KERAMIDA's Karst Survey Services:

KERAMIDA’s karst surveys are performed in accordance with the 1993 Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT), the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM), and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.


The MOU details specific tasks, including:

  • Gathering of research information from public and private sources
  • Performance of a field check to identify features found from the research, as well as additional karst features
  • Preparation of a report including photographs, maps, drainage areas, and land use for each sinkhole or other karst feature
  • If necessary, performance of dye-trace studies or other geotechnical studies to determine subsurface water flow in the project area, as well as surface water drainage patterns
  • Calculation of estimated annual pollutant loads from highway and drainage within the right-of-way (if necessary)

Karst Survey Experience:

KERAMIDA has provided Karst survey services to multiple engineering and construction firms in Indiana on approximately 15-20 sites in the Karst region of southern Indiana over the past several years. We have performed Karst surveys for a variety of proposed construction projects, including roadways, bridges, and buildings. KERAMIDA has also provided evaluation of Karst features within the construction footprint, selected feature treatments and mitigation following Karst Geological Resources and INDOT Construction (INDOT, October 27, 2016), and provided oversight to treat installations.

KERAMIDA's clients include:


Related Projects: