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12 and benefits are measured over the project lifecycle to capture the timing of costs and ben- efits. Then the NPV of the costs and benefits is calculated using the appropriate discount rate. 4. Assess Risks. The incorporation of risk into the Framework represents a significant enhance- ment to the freight investment analysis tools, methods, and processes that have been devel- oped as a part of previous research efforts. Risk in the context of a freight investment refers to downside outcomes due to uncertainty. From a financial perspective, investors or bond- holders may experience weaker-than-anticipated returns on their investment. Weak returns can be the result of weaker-than-expected demand for a facility's services, or higher-than- expected capital or operating costs, or a combination of the two. From the public's perspec- tive, the project may not yield its anticipated benefits in the form of congestion mitigation or job creation. NCFRP Report 12: Framework and Tools for Estimating Benefits of Specific Freight Network Investments details the specific structure and use of the Framework in each of these key areas. Existing Data and Analytical Tools The Freight Evaluation Framework was developed to utilize the wide array of analysis tools currently employed by different freight stakeholders. These tools provide different functions at different points in time, as shown in Figure S.2 and described as follows (a detailed descrip- tion of these analysis tools is provided in this report): Strategic planning tools include tools used to assess long-term needs and deficiencies impacting the transportation system and the lifecycle costs of operating and maintaining transportation infrastructure (for asset providers), and longer-term market analyses, pro- duction, and site selection alternatives (for service providers and end users). Carrier cost and performance analysis tools are operational analysis tools that estimate the operational performance and cost of freight carrier operations under alternative sce- narios to represent the impact of transportation projects, programs, or policies, and pri- marily are used by freight infrastructure providers and carriers. Shipper cost and performance models estimate the cost and time characteristics of alter- native freight mode and service options, and are intended to represent the total logistics time, cost, and safety/reliability tradeoffs available for a shipment so that optimal shipping decisions can be made. These tools primarily are used by end users (i.e., the businesses that Decades Years Months Days Strategic Tactical Daily Tool Functions Demand Production Routing Forecasting Planning Inventory Facility Operations Scheduling Location Planning Incident Risk Performance Management Evaluation Assessment Operations Figure S.2. Benefit assessment spectrum.