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Asset management is the art of balancing cost, performance, and risk. Viewed in this way, it has profound implications on distribution system planning, since traditional approaches balance only cost and performance without regard to risk. This paper examines distribution system planning in the context of reliability, risk, and asset management. It begins by providing an overview of asset management and asset planning. The paper then discusses planning with reliability as a key performance measure; performance is defined as expected reliability, and risk is defined as the volatility of reliability. The paper concludes by analyzing the inherent risk associated with different types of feeder designs including the use of manual switching, automated switching, reclosers, and looped topologies.