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Chapter 5: How Candidate Sites Are Evaluated Equally important to knowing how companies make decisions is knowing the factors that drive those decisions. Throughout the stages outlined in the previous chapter, supply chain and operations personnel evaluate each option and location for: the ability to access key markets. interaction with the transportation network. Proximity and/or access to markets, modal choice. especially supply chain networks, labor and workforce. is the single most important factor total cost environment. in determining the location of a utilities. freight facility. Most of the other site availability of suitable facilities. selection factors are used to refine permitting and regulation. the site selection process to specific, tax environment. sometimes competing, sites. public assistance and incentives. climate and natural hazards. Companies typically state that the first five criteria in this list access to markets, efficient transportation with modal choices, an ample and qualified workforce, and reasonable costs are more critical than the others in the list. Furthermore, proximity and/ or access to markets, especially supply chain networks, is the single most important factor in determining the location of a freight facility. Most of the other site selection factors are used to refine the site selection process to specific, sometimes competing, sites. Freight Facility Location Selection: A Guide for Public Officials 39