Doing Business With the Federal Highway Administration

FHA facts and figures<@VM>In Profile: Michael Vecchietti, director of administration and chief information officer

FHWA NATIONAL SECURITY GOALS

* Identify critical highway infrastructure, evaluate its vulnerability and develop measures to reduce vulnerability.

* Ensure preparedness for response to, and recovery from, attacks on highway infrastructure.

* Facilitate military deployment from forts to ports.

* Initiate research, technology development and deployment activities in support of a more secure highway system.

Address: 400 7th St. SW

Washington, DC 20590

(202) 366-0660

www.fhwa.dot.gov

Founded: Oct. 3, 1893

Administrator: Mary Peters

Employees: About 3,800

What it does: FHWA oversees the nation's highway system and its intermodal connections. It provides assistance in engineering, construction, technology and the like. It passes and promotes regulations, policies and guidelines for safety, access and economic development. It administers the Federal-Aid Highway Program, which gives the states financial help to build, improve and develop highways, roads and bridges; and the Federal Lands Highway Program, which provides access to public lands, including national parks and forests, through planning, contracts, construction and related works.

Major subagencies: FHWA is a part of the Transportation Department. There are four resource centers serving different sections of the country, and federal aid division offices in each state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

 

NUMBER CRUNCHING

2003 budget: $24.2 billion

 

Biggest changes of late: In October, seven projects around the country, six of which involve surface transportation, received "accelerated environmental review" under President Bush's executive order in September on environmental stewardship. The order also calls for an interagency task force to ensure an unencumbered decision-making process in connection with major transportation projects. About $2 billion of the agency's 2003 budget is earmarked for environmental stewardship projects.

THINGS TO NOTE

*In fiscal 2003, FHWA will begin an IT capital planning process to set priorities for IT investment decisions, making sure they are in sync with national goals and strategies, architecture planning and standards and security requirements. This also supports the e-government reform outlined in the President's Management Agenda.

*I really like FHWA's Web site. It's quite thorough, and information is easy to find for both the citizen and the government contractor. I also like how just about every page tells you the last time it was updated. This also revealed that some of the contracting opportunities found on the "Doing Business with FHWA" link hadn't been updated in a while, but perhaps there is nothing new to say. This link will take you through the agency's contracting processes, as well as show you what is up at its resource centers around the country.

*In July, it was announced the FHWA had $56.3 million in discretionary funds for infrastructure projects in 43 states and Puerto Rico. Six project categories were named, among them "value pricing projects and research."

*History buff? This agency has your fix. For the most part, FHWA was founded in the late 1800s. The Federal-Aid Highway Program was founded in July 1916, and the Interstate Highway Program in June 1956. Check out FHWA by Day at www.fhwa.dot.gov/byday/intro.htm.

MAJOR IT CONTRACTS

IT Support Services

Value: $175 million

Awarded: April to Indus Corp.

Purpose: Help desk support, local area network and wide area network support for regional offices, systems integration, recordkeeping support and other support.

 

Technical Support and Assistance

Value: $33 million

Awarded: July 12, 2001, to Science Applications International Corp., Booz Allen Hamilton Inc., Cambridge Systematics Inc. and Battel Corp.

Purpose: Support FHWA in areas such as travel management, transportation operations, freight management, intelligent transportation systems, technology services and evaluations.

 

National ITS Architecture Evolution and Support

Value: $32.9 million

Awarded: Aug. 28, 2001, to Iteris Inc.

Purpose: Support of intelligent transportation system initiatives, including evolution and maintenance of the national ITS architecture, configuration control and assessment.

CONTRACTS FOR BID

Technical Support for Intelligent Transportation System Communication Systems

Value: $2.3 million

RFP: January 2003

Purpose: Test and evaluate communications technologies for intelligent transportation systems. Services include systems analysis, prototyping and verifying system performance. Arinc Research Corp. holds the current contract for these services.

 

Software Integration Services

Value: Not available

RFP: November

Purpose: FHWA's Central Federal Lands Highway Division plans to upgrade project software to Primavera Enterprise Software Suite. As part of this, the division wants to improve work processes and train users.

Michael Vecchietti, FHA director of administration and chief information officer

Took the job: April 2000

Home now: Annandale, Va.

Alma mater: Bachelor's degree in political science from Randolph-Macon College, master's degree in government and public administration from American University

What are the IT challenges the agency faces, as you see them?

Moving toward an enterprise architecture that will align the Federal Highway Administration with the Department of Transportation, as well as with the departments of transportation in each of the states.



What do you look for in companies with which you are thinking of doing business?

I look for companies that bring innovative, integrated, comprehensive solutions to the table while keeping their eye on future technologies.



A year from now, where do you see the agency's technology capabilities?

I see advances in the agency's technology capabilities in the area of accessibility, that is, making highway data accessible to the people who need it, any time from any place.

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