NASA Looks to Establish Public-Private Partnership for KSC’s Shuttle Landing Facility

The Shuttle Landing Facility in Florida. (Credit: NASA)

NASA has issued a request for information (RFI) for industry input on how it can transform the space shuttle landing facility at the Kennedy Space Center into a multi-use facility to support aircraft and spacecraft launches and landings.The goal is to establish a public-private partnership to operate the facility.

An excerpt from the RFI is below; you can find the full document here.

Description

NASA’s Kennedy Space Center (KSC) is seeking input from industry on how to repurpose the SLF from a shuttle landing facility to a multi-purpose launch and landing facility supporting a broad spectrum of space and aerospace customers. This Request for Information (RFI) asks responders to:

  • Describe their overall business strategy with a concept of operations for how they intend to operate and maintain the facility;
  • Propose a governance structure, with key stakeholders identified, and describe how this governance structure integrates and accommodates NASA and other stakeholders;
  • Provide information on proposed sources of revenue, lines of business and target customer base for SLF usage; and
  • Describe a development strategy and proposed Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) to implement their business strategy.

NASA KSC seeks to identify industry interest to operate and maintain the SLF through a long term agreement that will also allow NASA continued access to the facility for its government and industry aerospace customers. A long term agreement is contemplated to allow the new operator sufficient time to implement their business plan, including any capital improvements projects considered necessary to make the SLF self-sustaining.

NASA has the option of establishing partnerships with external organizations to make beneficial use of available infrastructure like the SLF. Such arrangements are a benefit to the U.S. Government and NASA.

Purpose of This RFI

The purpose of this RFI is to identify potential partners who are interested in operating and maintaining the SLF, beginning on or about October 1, 2013. The resulting concept of operations from the respondents will provide data on the strongest areas of interest for the facility and help KSC develop the most effective customer agreement for SLF future uses. Several documents are attached to this RFI to assist respondents in understanding the capabilities and opportunities resident at the SLF. Attachment 1 is an aerial schematic showing the potential extent of facilities and land that may be included in any agreement. Attachment 2 is a list of infrastructure that may be included in a partnership agreement. Attachment 3 is an overlay of current restricted airspace.

NASA may establish a Public-Private or Public-Public Venture (PPV) to grant a partner an interest in real property for a specified term through an instrument such as a lease, a use permit, or other form of property out-grant term as authorized by the Space Act or other available authority. Such ventures are defined as partnering tools in NASA’s Real Property Management Program to leverage underutilized Agency real property to maximize utilization and efficiency. NASA KSC intends to grant the industry partner sufficient rights to occupy, operate, modify and maintain the SLF, as necessary to support the partner’s proposed business approach. It is NASA’s intent to ensure fairness to all parties and to ensure best value for the Government in granting use of NASA facilities in a manner that optimizes support for the Agency’s missions and objectives.