The influence of terrain in shaping the design of roads and other engineering structures is especially important in developing countries, where a minimum cost specification is usually adopted. Site investigation is carried out to identify terrain factors that are relevant to the project, from which a design is produced that strikes a balance between the terrain, the required level of performance and cost. Terrain evaluation helps the engineer to optimise this balance, by showing how the geology, water conditions and soils in a landscape relate to one another, and how they affect design. The Terrain Evaluation Manual presents experience of route location and materials surveys for roads overseas, and has been written for highway engineers or senior technicians who have responsibility for locating and planning the design of roads in tropical and subtropical countries.
Lawrance, C.J.; Byard, R.J.; Beaven, P.J. Terrain Evaluation Manual. State of the Art Review 7. (1993)