W912DS20R0022 – Sources Sought – Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace Replacement at the Watervliet Arsenal, Watervliet, NY

Sep 18, 2020 | Sources Sought

The Corps of Engineers New York District is soliciting comments from the construction community addressing the potential use of a Project Labor Agreement (PLA) for the following large scale (exceeding $25 million) construction project:

Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace Replacement at the Watervliet Arsenal, Watervliet, NY

This Design-Build Construction project will replace the existing SELAS Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace located at Watervliet Arsenal.  Work shall Include but not limited to: the removal of the existing SELAS furnace system; filling of the existing quench pit under the existing SELAS furnace system, where required by the new design hazardous materials remediation of areas affected by the work of the new Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace Replacement, design of the new Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace and supporting infrastructure with the existing facility, construction of the infrastructure, installation of the new Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace and commissioning of the new Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace. Design and construction of new Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace shall consist of system foundations, required pits and trenches to support electrical, water, air and gas requirements. Design and construction shall also consist of modification and commissioning of supporting facility systems. Training on the new Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace and supporting facility systems will also be required.  

In order to eliminate any production shut down of the existing SELAS Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace, the installation of the new Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace shall be preferred to be installed in a straight-line configuration adjacent to the existing furnace. The existing SELAS furnace shall remain fully operational until the installation of the new Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace is complete. The removal of the existing SELAS furnace will occur after the new system has been commissioned.

Range of Magnitude: Aggregate value of potential contracts is between $25,000,000 to $100,000,000.

Period of Performance:  Approximately 760 calendar days after Notice to Proceed.  Notice to Proceed is anticipated to occur May 2021.

Some of the factors that may be considered regarding PLA use are:

a. The involvement of multiple contractors and/or subcontractors working in multiple crafts or trades.

b. The complexity of the project.

c. Shortage of skilled labor in the region.

d. Completion of the project will require an extended period of time.

e. The use of PLA’s on other comparable projects in this geographic area.

f. The promotion of the Governments long term programs interests such as training of skilled workforce for future projects.

g. The possibility of labor disputes that threaten timely completion.

h. Additional costs from use of PLAs may be cost prohibitive.

A PLA is defined as a pre-hire collective bargaining agreement with one or more labor organizations that establishes the terms and conditions of employment for a specific construction project and is an agreement described in 29 U.S.C. 158(f).

Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Policy:

a. Project Labor Agreement (PLA) is a tool that agencies may use to promote economy and efficiency in Federal procurement. Pursuant to Executive Order 13502, agencies are encouraged to consider requiring the use of project labor agreements in connection with large-scale construction projects.

b. An agency may, if appropriate, require that every contractor and subcontractor engaged in construction on the project agree, for that project, to negotiate or become a party to a project labor agreement with one or more labor organizations if the agency decides that the use of project labor agreements will

1. Advance the Federal Governments interest in achieving economy and efficiency in Federal procurement, producing labor-management stability, and ensuring compliance with laws and regulations governing safety and health, equal employment opportunity, labor and employment standards, and other matters; and

2. Be consistent with law.

Reference: Provision: 52.222-33 Notice of Requirement for Project Labor Agreement Clause 52.222-34 Project Labor Agreement.

In consideration of the above factors, and any others which may be deemed appropriate, the construction community is invited to comment on the use of PLAs. Of particular interest to the Government are responses to the following questions:

a. Should a PLA be executed on the above described construction project? What benefits do you believe a PLA could achieve?  What other factors should the Corps consider before deciding to include PLA provisions for the Gun Tube Heat Treat Furnace Replacement Design-Bid-Build Construction project?

b. Will the use of a PLA be effective in achieving economy and efficiency?   If so, how?  What is the estimated relative cost impact, or any other economies or efficiencies derived by the Federal Government, if using a PLA? Will a PLA impact the cost of submitting an offer?

c. Are there any concerns regarding labor-management stability related to this project? Will the use of a PLA produce labor-management stability on this project?  Have labor disputes or other labor issues contributed to project delays in the local area?  Are you aware of examples of labor-management conflicts in the area which could impact the efficiency of this project, which a PLA could positively impact/resolve?  What market share does union labor in construction trades have in the geographic area?  Which existing Collective Bargaining Agreements will expire during construction of this project?

d. Will use of a PLA be conducive to ensuring compliance with laws and regulations governing safety and health, equal employment opportunity, labor and employment standards, and other relevant matters on this project? Are there instances where these standards have not been met on Federal contracts in the local area? Were PLAs used for those specific contracts?

e. This project will require construction contractors and/or subcontractors employing workers in multiple crafts or trades. Do you foresee any work on this project that may result in both the prime contractor and at least one subcontractor, or two or more subcontractors, employing the same trade?

f. Are there concerns by prime contractors on the availability of skilled construction labor? Are there large scale construction projects in the area (over $25M, within 50 miles of Watervliet Arsenal) which could impact availability of skilled labor for this project? What is the anticipated volatility in the labor market for the trades required for the execution of the project?  Are existing apprentice programs providing sufficient numbers of skilled workers for future requirements?

g. Is the proposed schedule/completion time one which would benefit from a PLA – if so, how? Will a PLA impact the completion time? Would a PLA benefit a project which contains a unique and compelling mission-critical schedule?

h. Have comparable projects been undertaken by Federal, State, municipal, or private entities in the geographic area of this project?  For each project, please indicate if a PLA was used, the initial and final cost, number of trades on the project, if the project was completed on time, and if there were any challenges such as labor shortages, labor related delays, safety issues, etc..

i. Will the use of PLAs impact the ability of potential Offerors and subcontractors to meet small-business utilization goals?

j. Will there be any difficulty in securing bid, performance, and payment bonds for the full amount of the Design-Build Construction contract as an individual company, through a Joint-Venture Agreement, or as part of a Teaming Agreement with another company?

Please provide your comments via e-mail to Alyssa Tornatore, Contract Specialist at alyssa.tornatore@usace.army.mil no later than close of business on 30 September 2020.

This is NOT a Request for Proposal and does not constitute any commitment by the Government. Responses to this labor market survey will be used by the Government to make appropriate acquisition decisions. All interested sources must respond to future solicitation announcements separately from responses to this market survey.

Contracting Office Address:

USACE District, New York, CENAN-CT, 26 Federal Plaza, New York, NY

10278-0090

Place of Performance:

Watervliet Arsenal, Watervliet, NY,

12189-4000

US

Primary Point of Contact:

Alyssa Tornatore

alyssa.tornatore@usace.army.mil

Phone: 9177908389

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