The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Louisville District has the privilege to oversee the construction of the $126 million Intelligence Production Center for the National Air and Space Intelligence Center at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, located in Ohio.
NASIC is the Department of Defense’s primary source for foreign air and space threat analysis. NASIC is the Air Force’s service intelligence center and the nation’s air and space intelligence center.
According to Louisville District Project Manager Steve Farkus, the IPC will be the office work space for more than 900 people associated with NASIC.
“It is a combination of nearly 256,000 square feet of new building combined with some elements of renovation,” Farkus said. “Central to the work of this project is providing a safe and secure environment very close to the new construction, where the NASIC staff will continue to function in their duties at a very high level of performance.”
The project was awarded Aug. 12, 2020, and the construction duration is 1,095 days from a Sept. 4 Notice to Proceed, but this project has complicated phasing, Farkus said.
“The nature of the work is that after construction is complete, NASIC and the Defense Intelligence Agency validate and conduct burn-in testing of equipment,” Farkus said. “We actually issue a second NTP to Messer Construction. They then have 60 days to connect the new project to existing buildings. Currently, our schedule has Jan. 16, 2025, as the actual date for the NASIC staff to move into their new space.”
Farkus indicated the team learned early on in the design process this was not normal office space; rather it is in a unique setting, where specialized work is to be conducted.
“We will increase their capacity to protect our fighting forces all over the world,” Farkus said. “The intelligence NASIC collects and analyzes saves lives.”
With this magnitude of a project, one of the biggest challenges has been taking the mission requirements the organization has and presenting a design that meets their needs.
“Open and frequent dialogue contributed to overcoming the challenges,” Farkus said. “We have worked to create a culture of very candid and open conversation.”
That transparent communication played a major factor in progressing the project forward.
“We were able to maintain our design schedule and overcome some technical challenges in the actual details the government received. The scale of the work for this project is gigantic, and we did not let that slow down our efforts for problem solving,” Farkus said. “We were able to hit the mark on our Ready to Advertise milestone, and construction award is, in fact, getting to our construction award date a week earlier than has been projected a year out.”
According to Farkus, this project had a diverse group of stakeholders come together over the course of years to develop one of the best projects to facilitate the collection and analysis of intelligence data.
“I’m very appreciative of the leadership across all the organizations who have stayed engaged and worked with us and resourced the team with what we needed to get this accomplished,” Farkus said.
Messer Construction company, with regional offices in Louisville, Cincinnati and Dayton, Ohio, is the prime contractor for this project.