Just as many plants were built originally in a short time in the early 1980’s, many now face renewal issues. There are many new variables beyond the traditional technological ones to consider in plant renewal strategy, including competitive risk factors and financial risk factors. This work integrates the concerns known to be influential in the process, and suggests ways to balance between them in the overall adjudication of available technology interventions for plant renewals. This paper focuses on macro trends as well as specific considerations relating to economics, performance and network design. The Appendix includes extensive work relating specifically to node size determinants, based on most recent theory and experience in traffic engineering, noise accumulation, service levels and network availability.