We are talking about the same, only use different words
In Norway we have 2 systems
1 step apply that takes 12 weeks, if the government is not happy with the project, they refuse it, we have to pay full fee and make a new applyment, wait another 12 weeks and it goes like this until the government is happy with the project.
2 step apply is what i like to use 12 weeks if they are not happy they let us know what, we dont pay full fee and we dont "loose" place in que.
Second part of 2 step, when they are happy and we want to start the actual building we need to apply one more time, answertime for that is 3 weeks, and the the total fee is only about 50 $ extra, so in other words we save time and money if the project is not 100% inside the regulation law's for that area and to the like of building Department.
So the terrain
When i order a terrain i get all the things i need, see Attached in dxf or dwg, i also can get what is special for Norway, Sosi, a txt format but more info inside it
Then i use terrainlines drag out XYZ points info in TC from it and make the terrain, if i need to level one area i use modifier, if there is more i make a copy of it and explode the and use boolean tools on it, original terrain in different layer and close it.
Then it's sort of easy to make the adjustment i need.
It is timeconsuming yes, but i think it's better then using loft for making a terrain and it is the same terrainlines and info that the government use to check, so …..
And TC terrain follow 98-99 % on the terrainlines, so it is pretty exactly in my mind, and best of all, it's included in TC
Then the Z Level, the terrain is made from fly over it with plane, using a radar, hence the difference comperred to real life, but it will be like that all over, so it,s easy to just move it a bit up or down when somebody have checked the real z heigth