[Federal Register Volume 75, Number 223 (Friday, November 19, 2010)]
[Notices]
[Pages 70966-70969]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2010-29176]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Transit Administration


Transit Asset Management (TAM) Pilot Program

AGENCY: Federal Transit Administration, United States Department of 
Transportation.

ACTION: Request for Proposals (RFP).

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SUMMARY: The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) is soliciting 
proposals from public transportation providers, state Departments of 
Transportation (DOT), and Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPO)--
individually or in partnership--to demonstrate effective Transit Asset 
Management (TAM) systems and ``best practices'', which can be 
replicated to improve transportation asset management at the nation's 
rail and bus public transportation agencies. Public sector applicants 
may partner with asset management system suppliers; however the 
official proposer must be a public agency. The TAM pilot program is 
intended to address several public transportation asset management 
challenges identified in previous research by FTA.\1\ FTA contemplates 
making multiple cooperative agreement awards for TAM pilot projects to 
varied teams.
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    \1\ National State of Good Repair Assessment, June 2010 and 
Transit Asset Management Practices--A National and International 
Review, July 2010.
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    The total available funding for the TAM pilot program is $3 
million. FTA will award cooperative agreements, up to $1 million each, 
to successful proposers for pilot projects that will demonstrate 
certain aspects of TAM systems. Successful TAM pilot projects will 
promote the use of advanced tools and practices throughout the public 
transportation industry. FTA is looking for innovative approaches to 
asset management using proven technology that will enhance the ability 
of public transportation providers, MPOs, and state DOTs to maintain 
their assets in a state of good repair and/or make more informed 
resource allocation decisions. Proposed solutions must be scalable and 
transferable such that they can be adapted by public transportation 
agencies and organizations of various sizes and modes. Additionally, 
FTA seeks to provide technical assistance to public transportation 
agencies through written reports and technical knowledge to be provided 
under the cooperative agreements.

DATES: Proposals must be submitted electronically by January 18, 2011.

ADDRESSES: Proposals shall be submitted electronically to 
http:[sol][sol]www.grants.gov. The Web site allows organizations to 
find and apply for funding opportunities electronically from all 
Federal grant-making agencies and is the single access point for over 
1,000 cooperative agreement programs offered by the 26 Federal grant-
making agencies.
    Mail and fax submissions will not be accepted (excluding 
supplemental information which cannot be sent electronically).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Contact Aaron C. James, Director, 
Office of Engineering, (202) 493-0107, aaron.james@dot.gov for 
proposal-specific information and issues.

I. Funding Authority

    The FY 2010 DOT-HUD appropriations bill provides significant 
resources to FTA to encourage improved management of the condition and 
recapitalization of the Nation's transit infrastructure. Specifically, 
the bill states:

    ``Asset Management--The conference agreement includes $5,000,000 
to develop asset management plans, technical assistance, data 
collection and a pilot program as proposed by the Senate. The House 
did not include similar language. The conferees expect the pilot 
program to include transit agencies that vary in size and direct FTA 
to report findings to the House and Senate Committees on 
appropriations within 18 months of enactment.''

    FTA is using a portion of this research funding, authorized by 49 
U.S.C. 5312, to support research in asset management practices and 
condition assessment methodologies, as well as new data collection and 
analysis activities. $3 million has been reserved for the pilot 
projects being solicited in this RFP.

II. Background and Objectives

    FTA is one of eleven agencies in the Department of Transportation 
(DOT) and has the primary responsibility of carrying out the Federal 
mandate of promoting and improving the nation's public transportation 
system. As part of its role, FTA provides over $10 billion annually in 
financial assistance to transit agencies and states for building and 
maintaining public transportation systems. There is growing concern 
that a significant portion of the nation's public transportation assets 
are in need of capital reinvestment due to the historically inadequate 
level of financial resources available for maintenance and asset 
replacement activities and/or an inability by agencies to set 
appropriate recapitalization priorities due to a lack of effective and 
easily adopted asset condition assessment tools and systems.
    The National State of Good Repair Assessment, published by FTA in 
June 2010, indicated that roughly one-third of the nation's public 
transit assets (weighted by replacement value) are in marginal or poor 
condition and that almost $80 billion is needed to bring them into a 
``state of good repair.'' It has been widely acknowledged that asset 
management practices in the public transportation sector have not 
received the same level of technical advancement or attention as have 
those used for the nation's highways and public utilities. FTA 
commissioned a review of ``Transit Asset Management Practices--National 
and International'' and posted this report to its Web site in July 
2010. The review found that while several transit agencies are 
utilizing TAM systems of one form or another, there are many transit 
agencies without a system in place for managing the condition of their 
capital assets in a holistic manner. Effective TAM systems use quality 
data

[[Page 70967]]

and well-defined objectives as part of a systematic process to 
strategically maintain, and improve, capital assets, resulting in the 
optimal allocation and utilization of available funding.
    To help increase the number of transit agencies with complete and 
up-to-date capital asset inventories and improve the level of asset 
management in the public transportation industry as a whole, FTA is 
looking to partner with transit agencies, state DOTs, MPOs, and asset 
management system suppliers to demonstrate innovative approaches for 
managing transportation assets from the initial capital asset 
acquisition planning phase to the asset recapitalization phase.
    Referring to the diagram below, this TAM pilot program is aimed at 
demonstrating solutions to asset management challenges in each of the 
four phases of the asset management cycle, as well as improvements to 
the overall asset management flow and approach.
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TN19NO10.000

    FTA intends to disseminate innovative and/or improved asset 
management methods developed as part of this pilot program to the 
industry-at-large so that public transportation agencies, state DOTs 
and MPOs can prioritize their transit asset repair, recapitalization 
and replacement needs, and develop reasonable cost/schedule estimates 
for achieving a ``state of good repair''. Asset management tools that 
will promote better management of safety-related public transportation 
capital assets will be of particular interest.
    FTA will participate in TAM pilot program activities at the project 
level by attending review meetings, commenting on technical reports, 
and maintaining frequent contact with the project manager. FTA subject 
matter experts (staff or contractors) will also be included in the 
project evaluations.
    Proposers will be required to assist FTA in reporting the TAM pilot 
program's progress to Congress, as necessary.

III. Schedule

    The successful proposers will be announced in late February 2011 
with an anticipated Notice to Proceed (NTP) in early March, 2011.

IV. Eligibility

    All proposals must meet the following minimum requirements to be 
eligible for further consideration of a cooperative agreement award:
    1. All proposing entities and/or teams must provide written 
certification that they have existing TAM systems and practices 
currently in use and are willing to provide a system demonstration.
    2. New systems and solutions, if proposed, must be a recent 
evolution of an existing system in use.
    3. Proposing entities and/or teams must already possess the 
technical capacity and capability to complete the TAM project.
    4. Asset management system suppliers must have currently available 
commercial products to qualify as an asset management system supplier; 
however products proposed do not necessarily have to be commercially 
available at the time of the proposal submission but must be a recent 
evolution of a currently available commercial product if new.
    5. Any proposed software system must explicitly state what data 
formats and communication protocols are supported ``off the shelf'' and 
whether or not they are proprietary in nature. [Note: A strong 
preference for software products that promote data interoperability 
between diverse types of information technology systems through use of 
open data formats and standard data communication protocols is desired 
by FTA.]
    6. Transit asset management systems and solutions proposed must 
have a high probability of being successfully implemented in lieu of 
newer, high-risk or experimental proposals involving unproven systems.
    7. Must be completed within 18 months or less.
    8. Must result in asset management tools and practices that can be 
implemented at reasonable cost other agencies of varying sizes and 
modal composition. More expensive tools or practices can be identified 
but should be in addition to cost effective solutions, if proposed.
    9. Must provide for data compatibility and data transfer with other 
transit management systems (e.g. maintenance management, financial 
management, etc.).

V. Proposal Requirements

A. Submission Process

    Proposals shall be submitted electronically to 
http:[sol][sol]www.grants.gov.

[[Page 70968]]

Mailed and faxed submissions will not be accepted (except for 
supplemental information that cannot be sent electronically).
    Please deliver supplemental materials to Doris Lyons, Office of 
Program Management, Doris.Lyonsmailto:@dot.gov, Federal Transit 
Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Room E46-204, Washington, 
DC 20590.

B. Projects Criteria

    Proposals will be evaluated on the basis of their implementation of 
the following major functionalities. Proposals should specifically 
address one or more of the following functions and clearly state the 
function(s) for which a solution is being proposed.
    1. Demonstrate innovative approaches to public transportation 
systems planning at the state DOT or MPO level that incorporates the 
long-term costs of maintaining the systems in a state of good repair 
(SGR) including:
    a. Ensuring agency policy goals and objectives are aligned with an 
approach focused on achieving and maintaining a state of good repair.
    b. Setting comprehensive policy intended to minimize life-cycle 
costs and maximize asset serviceability.
    c. Implementing an asset management system as part of a strategic 
plan for managing assets from cradle to grave, including initial 
funding and financing scenarios.
    2. Provide a transit capital asset inventory database with 
sufficient capacity and functionality to track all categories of public 
transportation capital assets combined:
    a. Specifying data items and protocol, for each asset,
    b. Specifying data collection methods, and
    c. Tracking complex assets, such as vehicles, facilities, and 
structures, at the system component and major subcomponents level.
    3. Demonstrate proven asset inspection methods including frequency 
and general criteria for identifying deficiencies, taking into account 
other industry practices (e.g. use of state highway bridge inspection 
procedures on elevated structures) that can be effectively applied 
throughout the public transportation industry, for:
    a. Assessing the physical condition of all asset categories, 
especially those providing a safety critical function,
    b. Providing a comprehensive set of performance measures for rating 
asset condition at the system component level (e.g. vehicles, 
facilities, stations, etc.) and major subcomponents level (e.g. 
escalators, elevators, etc.).
    c. Performing and tracking required maintenance for all asset 
inventory categories.
    4. Provide methodologies to better prioritize reinvestment needs 
including:
    a. Life-cycle planning of long-lived assets such as maintenance 
facilities, systems infrastructure and underground structures.
    b. Innovative ways to evaluate the effects of capital reinvestment 
decisions on system performance in terms of capacity, safety, 
reliability, maintainability, and operating costs.
    c. Risk-based approaches that factor in the risks associated with 
deteriorating asset conditions as opposed to just relying on an asset's 
age to set recapitalization priorities.
    d. The ability to perform scenario analysis involving both 
constrained and unconstrained needs, as well as the ability to project 
the optimal distribution of work given likely funding levels along with 
estimated impacts associated with deferred maintenance.
    5. Simplify and improve the integrity of asset condition data 
collection through the use of technology and process re-engineering.
    For purposes of this TAM pilot program, FTA is primarily interested 
in pursuing the TAM projects described above however, other TAM 
projects may be proposed as long as they are consistent with FTA's 
stated objectives in Section II and they meet the eligibility 
requirements in Section IV.
    Upon completion of FTA's proposal review, evaluation, scoring and 
ranking process, FTA reserves the right to negotiate cooperative 
agreement awards for entire proposal offerings or specific portions of 
proposals.

C. Proposal Content

    Proposals shall be limited to 60 pages in total length and shall 
contain the following:
    1. Cover sheet (1 page)--Includes the entity submitting the 
proposal, the principal investigator's name, title, and contact 
information (e.g. address, phone, fax, and e-mail). Name and contact 
information for the entity's key point(s) of contact for all 
cooperative activities (if different from the principle investigator).
    2. Abstract (2 pages)--Abstract shall include project background, 
purpose, demonstration methodology, intended outcomes, and method of 
measuring how successful the project has been in achieving the intended 
outcomes.
    3. Statement of Eligibility--The eligibility requirements (as 
listed in Section IV above) should be addressed in narrative form and 
include a ``waiver letter'' stating FTA will have unrestricted rights 
to use data outputs generated.
    4. Project narrative (not to exceed 30 pages)--Project narrative 
shall include the following information:
    a. Project Understanding and TAM approach--Understanding of FTA's 
goals and objectives the problem to be addressed, beyond the 
description provided by FTA in this RFP; and the proposed approach for 
executing the research project. Particular attention should be given to 
describing how the proposing entity will ensure that the proposed TAM 
project will result in beneficial systems and solutions that can be 
readily implemented at other agencies of varying sizes and modes.
    b. Past Experience--Experience in asset management implementation 
and knowledge of public transportation management issues related to 
asset management.
    c. Technical Capacity--Technical experience and ability of the 
proposing organization to address asset management issues identified in 
this RFP and the availability of key project resources.
    5. Preliminary Project Implementation Plan that includes well 
defined objectives, resources, tasks to accomplish the objectives and a 
schedule of activities with timelines, and deliverables.
    6. A Small Business (SB) Subcontracting Plan detailing how small 
businesses will be utilized as members of the proposing team. Joint 
ventures with Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) firms (i.e., 
Small Business owned and controlled by Minorities, Women or Disabled 
Veterans) with requisite experience are encouraged.
    In addition to the required proposal elements, proposers have the 
option to submit supplemental material such as: Brochures, 
publications, products, letters of support etc. Such supplemental 
materials, when submitted in appendices, will not be considered a part 
of the 60-page proposal limit.

D. Deliverables

    Successful proposers are not required to deliver proprietary 
systems information to FTA. The following are required:
    1. Monthly progress reports with a narrative describing progress on 
key milestone activities, monthly and cumulative budget expenditures, 
SB and DBE utilization, problems encountered and work planned for the 
next month.
    2. A detailed Project Implementation Plan within 15 working days of 
receiving a Notice to Proceed (NTP).

[[Page 70969]]

    3. Fifteen (15) bound copies (including 5 color copies) and an 
electronic copy in PDF format of an Interim Report presenting 
objectives, approach, interim findings and recommendations along with 
supporting data by May 30, 2011.
    4. A presentation of the Interim Report, at FTA headquarters or via 
webinar/conference call by June 6, 2011.
    5. Fifteen (15) bound copies (including 5 color copies) and an 
electronic copy in PDF format of a Preliminary Report presenting 
objectives, approach, preliminary findings, and recommendations, 
supporting data, and comments from FTA on the Interim Report, no later 
than 4 months after completion of Interim Report.
    6. A presentation of the Preliminary Report, at FTA headquarters or 
via webinar/conference call within two weeks of submission of 
Preliminary Report.
    7. Fifteen (15) bound copies (including 5 color copies) and an 
electronic copy in PDF format of a Final Report, addressing preliminary 
report findings and FTA comments, no later than 16 months after NTP.
    8. A presentation of the Final Report at FTA headquarters or via 
webinar/conference call within two weeks of submission of the Final 
Report.
    9. Forty (40) hours of technical assistance by suitable staff to 
participate in information exchange forums such as webinars, meetings, 
teleconferences, or workshops to explain TAM solution.
    10. TAM software methodology, solutions and non proprietary TAM 
systems information with appropriate level of documentation and 
recommended practice(s) in a medium compatible with FTA software 
system(s).
    Proposers should plan on providing at least one of the three 
presentations required above, in person to FTA at its headquarters in 
Washington, DC. FTA will make every effort to accommodate webinars or 
conference calls for the other two presentations.
    Other deliverables, if applicable, will be negotiated prior to 
award of the cooperative agreement(s). Electronic copies of all 
deliverables must be provided in PDF format and in Microsoft Office.

VI. Evaluation Criteria

    Proposals will be evaluated based on the following criteria and 
scoring system:
    1. Project understanding and approach. (25%)
    2. Technical capacity. (20%)
    3. Product superiority based on the degree to which all eligibility 
requirements are met or exceeded, including software products that 
promote data interoperability. (30%).
    4. Preliminary Project Implementation Plan. (15%)
    5. Small Business Subcontracting Plan detailing how small 
businesses will be utilized as members of the proposing team. (10%)
    After technical proposals have been evaluated, scored and ranked 
according to overall value, FTA will enter into negotiations with the 
entities that submitted the highest ranked proposals to set the 
cooperative agreement project scope and cost.

VII. Award Administration

    Following receipt of the FTA Administrator's notification letter, 
the successful entity(ies) will be required to submit its proposal 
through the FTA Transportation Electronic Award Management (TEAM) 
system. FTA will manage the cooperative agreement(s) through the TEAM 
system. Before FTA may award Federal financial assistance through a 
Federal cooperative agreement, the entity must submit all 
certifications and assurances pertaining to itself and its project as 
required by Federal laws and regulations. The Fiscal Year 2011 Annual 
List of Certifications and Assurances for FTA Cooperative Agreements 
and Guidelines will be published in the Federal Register and posted on 
the FTA Web site at http:[sol][sol]www.fta.dot.gov.

VIII. Agency Contact

    Contact Aaron C. James, Director, Office of Engineering, (202) 493-
0107, aaron.james@dot.gov for proposal-specific information and issues.

    Issued in Washington, DC this 15th day of November 2010.
Peter Rogoff,
Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2010-29176 Filed 11-18-10; 8:45 am]
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