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The National Academies

ACRP 03-57 [RFP]

A Guidebook to Prepare Airports for Transformations in Wireless Connectivity

Posted Date: 1/16/2020

  Project Data
Funds: $400,000
Contract Time: 18 months
(includes 1 month for ACRP review and approval of the interim report and 3 months for ACRP review and for contractor revision of the draft final deliverables)
Authorization to Begin Work: 7/1/2020 -- estimated
Staff Responsibility: Theresia H. Schatz
   Phone: (202) 334-2981
   Email: tschatz@nas.edu
RFP Close Date: 3/17/2020
Fiscal Year: 2020

BACKGROUND
 
Wireless connectivity and real-time interfaces can provide a wide range of capabilities and benefits for airport operators and users. Airport staff and stakeholders, including passengers, pilots, and service providers, stand to benefit from advancements in wireless technologies to foster a more curated passenger experience and safe and efficient airport operations. As wireless technologies advance, services will migrate from 4G to 5G networks or other platforms, calling for new improved connectivity.
 
Research is needed to help airport decision-makers prepare for and evaluate the impacts of emerging wireless technologies on their operational and financial investment opportunities. The research should also bridge the gap between their existing wireless network infrastructure and the future requirements.  
 
OBJECTIVE

The objective of this research is to develop a guidebook that provides airport industry practitioners with a foundation for easily scalable solutions to accommodate evolving wireless technologies. This guidebook should be for all types and sizes of airports and should include, at a minimum, the following information: 
  • Requirements for airport technology and spatial infrastructure to enable future ubiquitous, higher bandwidth, wireless connectivity and real-time data transfer; 
  • An understanding of co-locations and retrofit of current systems (e.g., placing the radios on existing stop lights or street light infrastructure that is already in place) to leverage existing resources;
  • An operational transition plan for incorporation of new capabilities to existing technology;
  • Identification of the levels of financial investment required for differing technologies that includes a menu of options and a demonstration of the best return on investment and associated timeline; 
  • An all-encompassing cybersecurity plan to protect data throughout the entire lifecycle; and
  • End-state user application examples and benefits for various airport stakeholders including, but not limited to:
    • passenger and tenant experience,
    • airport operations,
    • safety and security,
    • asset management, and
    • disaster preparedness and recovery.
 
RESEARCH PLAN
 
The ACRP is seeking the insights of proposers on how best to achieve the research objective. Proposers are asked to develop and include a detailed research plan for accomplishing the project objective. Proposers are expected to describe research plans that can realistically be accomplished within the constraints of available funds and contract time. Proposals must present the proposers' current thinking in sufficient detail to demonstrate their understanding of the issues and the soundness of their approach to meeting the research objective. The work proposed must be divided into tasks and proposers must describe the work proposed in each task in detail.
 
The research plan should include appropriate deliverables, for ACRP approval, that include at minimum: (1) detailed examples of lessons learned from current applications and emerging wireless technology implementation at airports or other transportation systems; (2) an annotated outline of the guidebook; and (3) an interim report that describes work done in early tasks with an updated work plan for remaining tasks.
 
The research plan should include other appropriate checkpoints with the ACRP panel, including at a minimum (1) a kick-off teleconference meeting to be held within 1 month of the Notice to Proceed and (2) one face-to-face interim deliverable review meeting, as well as web-enabled teleconferences tied to the panel review and ACRP approval of other interim deliverables deemed appropriate.
 
The final deliverables will include: (1) the guidebook that meets the stated objective and includes a glossary of terms; (2) an electronic copy of a summary PowerPoint presentation that could be used for informing airport decision-makers on the viability of the proposed solutions; (3) (a) a Summary of Key Findings (see Special Note D); (b) a Further Recommended Research Memo (see Special Note E); and (c) a technical memo titled: “Implementation of Research Findings and Products” (see Special Note F).
 
Note: Following receipt of the draft final deliverables, there should be 3 months for ACRP review and comments and for contractor preparation of the final deliverables. For budgeting purposes, proposers should assume that ACRP will provide access to web-enabled teleconference services. ACRP will pay panel members’ travel costs for the face-to-face meeting. Proposers should assume that the meeting will be held in Washington, DC.
 
 
SPECIAL NOTES
 
A. Proposers should include teams that have expertise in wireless networks, telecommunications, and airport operations and finance. 
 
B. The proposers should define the different existing and future wireless technologies.  
 
C. Other ACRP and non-ACRP related research, reports that have been published or are ongoing, should be considered when conducting this research. Proposers should search TRB’s Website http://www.trb.org/Projects/Projects2.aspx to identify other related ACRP research.
 
D. The Summary of Key Findings will be a stand-alone document. It should (a) convey the most pertinent and applicable results of the project’s research; (b) be geared toward the airport industry practitioner while minimizing technical language; (c) present results using text and graphics as appropriate; and (d) encourage readers to explore the primary project deliverables. The Summary of Key Findings should be limited to no more than 4 pages.
 
E. The Further Recommended Research Memo will be a stand-alone document. It should (a) identify logical follow-on research that would benefit the industry yet was beyond the original scope and budget of the project; (b) describe how the proposed follow-on research relates to ACRP’s research roadmaps, if applicable; and (c) for the highest priority research needs, include research ideas and/or problem statements to be added to ACRP’s IdeaHub, the program’s online repository of research needs.
 
F. The technical memorandum titled, “Implementation of Research Findings and Products” should provide: (a) recommended tactics to facilitate implementation; (b) possible institutions/partners and their potential implementation role; (c) potential impediments to successful implementation; (d) metrics to measure extend of product use and benefit; (e) related FAA guidance; and (f) appendices as needed. An annotated template for the memorandum is found here: onlinepubs.trb.org/onlinepubs/acrp/ACRP_Implementation_TechMemo_Template_2019.docx.
 
G. Airports have received many surveys in response to ACRP projects. In an effort to ensure an adequate response rate and collection of information, proposers may consider the use of focus groups, Internet/web-based technologies, social networking sites, and industry conferences or other techniques that may be appropriate.
 
H. Proposals are evaluated by the ACRP staff and project panels consisting of individuals collectively very knowledgeable in the problem area. Selection of an agency is made by the project panel considering the following factors: (1) the proposer's demonstrated understanding of the problem; (2) the merit of the proposed research approach and experiment design; (3) the experience, qualifications, and objectivity of the research team in the same or closely related problem area; (4) the plan for ensuring application of results; (5) how the proposer approaches inclusion and diversity in the composition of their team and research approach, including participation by certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprises; and, if relevant, (6) the adequacy of the facilities.
 
Note: The proposer's approach to inclusion and diversity as well as participation by Disadvantaged Business Enterprises should be incorporated in Item 12 of the proposal.
 
I. Proposals should include a task-by-task breakdown of labor hours for each staff member as shown in Figure 4 in the brochure, "Information and Instructions for Preparing Proposals" (http://onlinepubs.trb.org/onlinepubs/crp/docs/ProposalPrep.pdf). Proposals also should include a breakdown of all costs (e.g., wages, indirect costs, travel, materials, and total) for each task using Figures 5 and 6 in the brochure. Please note that TRB Cooperative Research Program subawards (selected proposers are considered subawards to the National Academy of Sciences, the parent organization of TRB) must comply with 2 CFR 200 – Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards. These requirements include a provision that proposers without a “federally” Negotiated Indirect Costs Rate Agreement (NICRA) shall be subject to a maximum allowable indirect rate of 10% of Modified Total Direct Costs. Modified Total Direct Costs include all salaries and wages, applicable fringe benefits, materials and supplies, services, travel, and up to the first $25,000 of each lower-tier subaward and subcontract. Modified Total Direct Costs exclude equipment, capital expenditures, charges for patient care, rental costs, tuition remission, scholarships and fellowships, participant support costs and the portion of each lower-tier subaward and subcontract in excess of $25,000.
 
J. Item 4(c), "Anticipated Research Results," in each proposal must include an Implementation Plan that describes activities to promote application of the product of this research. It is expected that the implementation plan will evolve during the project; however, proposals must describe, as a minimum, the following: (a) the "product" expected from the research, (b) the audience or "market" for this product, (c) a realistic assessment of impediments to successful implementation, (d) the institutions and individuals who might take leadership in applying the research product, (e) the activities necessary for successful implementation, and (f) the criteria for judging the progress and consequences of implementation.
 
K. Item 5 in the proposal, "Qualifications of the Research Team," must include a section labeled "Disclosure." Information relevant to the ACRP's need to ensure objectivity and to be aware of possible sources of significant financial or organizational conflict of interest in conducting the research must be presented in this section of the proposal. For example, under certain conditions, ownership of the proposing agency, other organizational relationships, or proprietary rights and interests could be perceived as jeopardizing an objective approach to the research effort, and proposers are asked to disclose any such circumstances and to explain how they will be accounted for in this study. If there are no issues related to objectivity, this should be stated.
 
L. Copyrights - All data, written materials, computer software, graphic and photographic images, and other information prepared under the contract and the copyrights therein shall be owned by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The contractor and subcontractors will be able to publish this material for non-commercial purposes, for internal use, or to further academic research or studies with permission from TRB Cooperative Research Programs. The contractor and subcontractors will not be allowed to sell the project material without prior approval by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. By signing a contract with the National Academy of Sciences, contractors accept legal responsibility for any copyright infringement that may exist in work done for TRB. Contractors are therefore responsible for obtaining all necessary permissions for use of copyrighted material in TRB’s Cooperative Research Programs publications. For guidance on TRB’s policies on using copyrighted material please consult Section 5.4, “Use of Copyrighted Material,” in the Procedural Manual for Contractors.
 
 
 

Proposals (15 single-bound copies) are due not later than 4:30 p.m. on 3/17/2020.

This is a firm deadline, and extensions are not granted. In order to be considered for award, all copies of the agency's proposal accompanied by the executed, unmodified Liability Statement must be in our offices not later than the deadline shown, or the proposal will be rejected. Proposers may choose any carrier or delivery service for their proposals. However, proposers assume the risk of proposal rejection if the carrier or delivery service does not deliver all the required documents by the deadline.

Delivery Address:

PROPOSAL-ACRP
ATTN: Christopher J. Hedges
Director, Cooperative Research Programs
Transportation Research Board
500 Fifth Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001


Liability Statement

The signature of an authorized representative of the proposing agency is required on the unaltered statement in order for the ACRP to accept the agency's proposal for consideration. Proposals submitted without this executed and unaltered statement by the proposal deadline will be summarily rejected. An executed, unaltered statement indicates the agency's intent and ability to execute a contract that includes the provisions in the statement.

Here is a printable version of the Liability Statement (pdf). A free copy of the Adobe Acrobat PDF reader is available at http://www.adobe.com.


General Notes

1. According to the provisions of Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 21, which relates to nondiscrimination in federally assisted programs, all parties are hereby notified that the contract entered into pursuant to this announcement will be awarded without discrimination on the grounds of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or disability.

2. The essential features required in a proposal for research are detailed in the current brochure entitled "Information and Instructions for Preparing Proposals" (updated July 2019). Proposals must be prepared according to this document, and attention is directed specifically to Section V for mandatory requirements. Proposals that do not conform with these requirements will be rejected. This brochure is available here.

3. The total funds available are made known in the project statement, and line items of the budget are examined to determine the reasonableness of the allocation of funds to the various tasks. If the proposed total cost exceeds the funds available, the proposal is rejected.

4. All proposals become the property of the Transportation Research Board. Final disposition will be made according to the policies thereof, including the right to reject all proposals.

5. Potential proposers should understand that follow-on activities for this project may be carried out through either a contract amendment modifying the scope of work with additional time and funds, or through a new contract (via sole source, full, or restrictive competition).


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