QGIS version: 3.12

OS: Mac 12.1

Problem: I am trying to project a map containing parcel boundaries (vector) and orthoimagery (raster) to match the projection used by a set of (offline) project plans (which I have as an image file) so that I can line my map layers up to match the project plans using the Adobe Creative Suite.

The engineer who designed the project plans in CAD told me that the projection she used was NAD83 (NSRS2011), CA State Plane Zone III, U.S. Survey Feet.

I cannot find this precise projection in QGIS’s list of projections.

However, I tried the following projections, and none of them worked (that is, none of them projected my map layers in a way that lines up with the project plans as expected):

NAD83 / California zone 3 (EPSG: 26943)

NAD83 / California zone 3 (ftUS) (EPSG: 2227)

NAD83(2011) / California zone 3 (EPSG: 6419)

NAD83(2011) / California zone 3 (ftUS) (EPSG: 6420)

NAD83(HARN) / California zone 3 (EPSG: 2768)

NAD83(HARN) / California zone 3 (ftUS) (EPSG: 2872)

NAD83(NSRS2007) / California zone 3 (EPSG: 3493)

NAD83(NSRS2007) / California zone 3 (ftUS) (EPSG: 3494)

NAD_1983_HARN_StatePlane_California_III_FIPS_0403 (EPSG: 102243)

NAD_1983_StatePlane_California_III_FIPS_0403_Feet (EPSG: 102643)

Which projection should I be using in QGIS so that my map layers line up with the projection “NAD83 (NSRS2011), CA State Plane Zone III, U.S. Survey Feet”?

  • 2
    So best would be to ask the engineer who provided the data. From far, without being involved and without a sample of the data, we could just start guessing. It would also help to know your exact workflow.
    – Babel
    Commented May 30, 2023 at 20:46
  • Welcome to Geographic Information Systems! It looks like you have a coordinate system problem, see if any of the suggestions at ihatecoordinatesystems.com help.
    – Ian Turton
    Commented May 31, 2023 at 7:34

1 Answer 1


[EPSG 6420][1] looks like it (and 6420 is available in QGIS).

The remarks at the EPSG site states: "Replaces NAD83(NSRS2007) / California zone 3 (ftUS) (CRS code 3494)."

If EPSG 6420 does not align your data then as Ian suggests in the comments it's possible that the raster data, the vector data, or the project plans CRS are incorrect (or some combination thereof). You could improve your posts by including those data in your post. See gdalinfo yourfilehere or ogrinfo -json yourfilehere to access those CRS data. Also, you say the data do not align but you do not mention how closely they match. Is it possible that you are using poor transformation choices for these data? You can access the transformations in the QGIS project properties and confirm the accuracy of your transformations. [1]: https://epsg.io/6420

  • OP mentioned this CRS in their question and mentioned that they tried it, but it did not work.
    – Babel
    Commented May 31, 2023 at 5:55
  • then some one is mistaken about the CRS of the data or the project.
    – Ian Turton
    Commented May 31, 2023 at 7:34

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