The Role of Transportation Investment in Private Firm Site Selection

Transportation investment is integrally linked with economic development. Cities, metropolitan areas, and states regularly plan and develop transportation projects that are intended to attract new businesses to specific sites and/or support the growth of existing businesses in or near their current sites. Understanding the nature and amount of economic benefits accruing from these transportation investments in a credible and defensible manner, however, is challenging.

For the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), EBP (formerly EDR Group) developed a report on "The Role of Transportation Investment in Private Firm Site Selection," which is a primer-style document for transportation planners. This report describes the site selection industry, details their methods and procedures, and discusses the factors site selectors use when choosing locations for facilities of different types. It considers site selection in the context of both attracting new economic activity as well as retaining existing economic activity. EBP also developed a series of fact sheets on site selection considerations. FHWA will use these resources to provide transportation planners at MPOs, state DOTs, and elsewhere with knowledge of these practices and how the site selection industry considers highways when making site decisions.