Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Civil Engineering

First Advisor

Donald B. Stofford

Second Advisor

Herbert W. Busching


This report describes the procedure used in locating a scenic highway in the underdeveloped mountainous area of Pickens County, South Carolina, and Transylvania County, North Carolina, through the use of aerial photographic interpretation techniques. The study consists of a brief review of literature related to the use of aerial photographic interpreation techniques in highway location and a discussion of the actual procedures followed in locating the proposed highway. The proposed highway is approximately 27 miles long and extends between South Carolina Highway 11 near Lake Jocassee and the proposed Blue Ridge Parkway extension near the Jackson-Transylvania County line. Selection of the alignment for the route was based on: (1) minimization of construction cost, (2) maximization of the economic and recreational development of the area surrounding the route and (3) minimization of the distrubance to the existing environment. Several alternate alignments were selected and compared on the basis of construction problems encountered, cost and how well each met the basic route selection criteria. The alternates selected were the most direct route, the least cost route, the most scenic route and an optimum route based on the established criteria. The study concluded that aerial photographic interpretation techniques can be used with a high degree of success in highway location studies in mountainous terrain. Aerial photographs and aerial photographic techniques should be the primary tools in any highway location problem because they provide an optimum means of evaluating the effects of topography, drainage conditions, soil conditions and land use on route location.