Huntsville Center supports Army’s Smart Barracks Initiative

September 30, 2020

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — Focusing on the Army’s priority of taking care of its Soldiers, the U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville, recently awarded a $4.5 million contract to Spectrum Solutions, Inc. in support of the U.S. Army Materiel Command’s Smart Barracks Initiative.

The initiative will strive to modernize Soldier barracks by applying innovations and best practices in smart technology, cyber and physical security, energy systems, and quality-of-life improvements for the Soldiers who call these facilities their home.

In July, AMC reached out to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the Huntsville Center’s expertise to help execute this initiative after its leaders identified the program’s top five objectives:

  • Provide increased security to prevent suicide, harassment and assault
  • Provide increased water and power efficiencies to include sustainability
  • Provide ease of maintenance to the facility and its systems to make it more efficient
  • Provide a means of capturing the performance/status data association with all Army baseline systems and the analytics that allow the data to be shaped, assessed and used by decision makers
  • Increase the appeal of barracks to young Soldiers, making the facilities a place they want to live in.

Responding to the request for support, Jelani Ingram, architecture branch chief with the Huntsville Center, established a product deliver team within days, and prepared a briefing to demonstrate his team’s technical and contracting ability to award the effort for fiscal year 2020.

Huntsville Center also outlined a phased approach to establish a prototype strategy that can be implemented across many installations. AMC has designated Fort Benning, Georgia, as the initial site.

The Utility Monitoring and Control Systems (UMCS) Mandatory Center of Expertise’s newest MATOC award, UMCS V, was identified as the best contract vehicle for the first phase of the project. The task order for Phase 1 provides utility monitoring and control system, heating ventilation and air conditioning, electrical retrofits, fire detection/protection modifications and wireless communications, maintenance and service, and plumbing enhancements at Fort Benning.

A virtual site visit was conducted Aug. 11. Phase 1 was awarded on Sept. 22 and is expected to be completed by April 22, 2023. Planning of Phase 2 of the Smart Barracks Initiative, which includes furnishing and electronic security systems, will begin in October with contracts awarded by the end of fiscal year 2021.

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