The best way to approach this assignment is to ask "What is the controversy? What needs to be argued and supported with evidence?" Take for example two possible sites for the ferry crossing -- one safe and expensive, one risky but cheap. Or one site that is convenient for possible customers on one side of the water, but inconvenient for customers on the other side. When you have established the elements that need to be argued or recommended, then make two lists -- a pro and a con. Research the project with an eye toward defending your choices in a debate/presentation to your superiors or to the financial sources or to the general public of the two communities. By finding the point of controversy you automatically find your research project's raison d'etre -- the energy to present your argument for one placement over another.
What if I go for marketing research? What aspects should I be looking for?