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Chapter 6: The Changing Landscape (Complicating Factors) No matter how familiar a public sector planner or official may be with freight issues or supply chain dynamics, it is difficult to stay current with the trends, challenges, and opportunities that are constantly in flux in the marketplace. This refers not only to local, state, and national trends and issues but also to the global landscape. In addition, while the location selection process has been presented in this guide as if it always occurs in a consistent and orderly manner, such is not always the case. This chapter highlights for public officials some of the aspects of that changing landscape that they need to consider, or of which they should at least be aware. Changing role of the freight facility Transportation and logistics are dynamic by their very nature. Freight is always in motion, and the means of accommodating this motion evolve constantly. Changes in modes, connections between modes, and the size, function, and location of those connections are all part of the changing landscape of freight movement. There is an ever-increasing emphasis on "goods in motion," referring to the supply chain ideal of goods delivered at moment of need, straight from production. Freight facilities are increasingly used for modal transfer, consolidation, deconsolidation, and redirection not storage. For example, distribution centers may in some cases need to be smaller in size but greater in number and located closer to markets. Orders filled from goods already on the way will result in smaller static inventories. Technologies to enable this approach will continue to improve. Freight Facility Location Selection: A Guide for Public Officials 55