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An approach is described for electricity distribution system planning that allows issues such as load growth, distributed generation, asset management, quality of supply and environmental issues to be considered. In contrast to traditional optimisation approaches which typically assess alternative planning solutions by finding the solution with the minimum total cost, the proposed methodology utilises a number of discrete evaluation criteria within a multiple criteria decision making (MCDM) environment to examine and assess the trade-offs between alternative solutions. To demonstrate the proposed methodology a worked example is performed on a test distribution network that forms part of an existing distribution network in one UK distribution company area. The results confirm the suitability of MCDM techniques to the distribution planning problem and highlight how evaluating all planning problems simultaneously can provide substantial benefits to a distribution company.