As part of the Air Force's work to rebuild Tyndall Air Force Base, FL, after Hurricane Michael severely damaged the base in October, the service plans to award a sole-source communications infrastructure contract -- a key step in enabling command-and-control operations at the base.
In a Jan. 4 notice, the service justifies its decision to use a "fair opportunities exception," which allows it to bypass standard market research and competition requirements, due to the urgency of standing up an information technology system at Tyndall. The service is calling the program "Project Phoenix" and plans to use an existing NetOps indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract to make an award to AT&T.
"Tyndall Air Force Base was recently devastated by Hurricane Michael. The base communications and infrastructure and information technology services were substantially impacted," the notice states. "The purpose of this acquisition is to reconstitute and engineer a permanent network delivery solution for Tyndall AFB while operating in an environment devastated by Hurricane Michael."
Because of the damage at Tyndall, it makes more sense to modernize the IT infrastructure rather than repair existing systems, according to the notice.
"The events at Tyndall provide an opportunity to install top of the line, industry-provided technology and services," the notice states. "To meet this end, the Air Force intends to improve IT user experience through commercial services in order to increase mission effectiveness. . . . The managed network services to be ordered will provide overall reconstitution and management of Tyndall AFB's IT infrastructure, including real-time proactive network monitoring, rapid troubleshooting and service restoration."
The document doesn't include a cost estimate for the effort, but notes that Air Combat Command has established a requirement for Tyndall to be able to perform C2 operations by March 1.