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Multi criteria analysis for transport business cases guidance

A new document has been released for consultation with the wider highways audience to gain feedback on the Multi criteria analysis for transport business cases guidelines [PDF, 534 KB].

The feedback period will close on Saturday 30th September 2017, after which the final document will be prepared and released.

To submit feedback, or if there are any queries, contact

Use of this document in its current release form is strongly encouraged.

About the MCA guidance

As part of the Transport Agency’s responsibility for delivering and maintaining key parts of the transport system, careful investment and prioritisation is required.

This guidance should be applied to all business cases that require Transport Agency funding. 

This guidance is focussed on the multi criteria analysis (MCA) component of option and alternatives selection within the business case approach and seeks to provide a common approach to the MCA. Providing this uniformity of approach will allow better and more consistent transport investment decisions to be made. It is acknowledged that all projects have their own characteristics and this guidance provides a mechanism for deviation from the standard MCA criteria if a project’s scale or specific attributes require this. 

This guidance has been developed to provide transparency of approach to the MCA process and to ensure that the decisions made in the business case phase of a project do not undermine the subsequent RMA phases for a project. This guidance is not intended to replace the RMA process of a project but the MCA criteria and approach could be considered as appropriate or as a strong starting point in the RMA phase depending on a project’s specific needs. It is the intention of this guidance that the MCA phase of the business case phase is as consistent as possible with the subsequent RMA phase.

Whilst important, the MCA is one of the tools to be used in selecting a preferred option, and is just one aspect of the decision making process. Investors may have other factors they consider alongside the option MCA when deciding on a preferred option. Please bear this in mind when applying this guidance.