Hierarchical mesh representation and mesh simplification have been addressed in computer graphics for adaptive level-of-detail rendering of 3D objects. In this paper, we propose a hierarchical system suitable for progressive transmission using hierarchical 3D meshes such that each mesh level has Delaunay topology. The Delaunay topology constraint on each mesh layer not only helps to design meshes with desired geometric properties, but also enables efficient compression of the mesh data. The hierarchical compression technique is based on a nearest-neighbor ordering of mesh node points. This ordering serves to define the mesh boundary as well as a spatial prediction relation on the nodes, which is employed for differential node point location. The compression method allows progressive transmission and quality scalability.