Interior preps cloud acquisition worth up to $1B

The department wants to move its agencies away from local data centers towards more standard, shared IT services.
Department of the Interior
(Tajha Chappellet-Lanier / FedScoop)

The Department of the Interior is developing a contract that would offer a single public cloud service provider up to $1 billion to help move the department’s various agencies to a streamlined hybrid cloud environment.

Interior’s U.S. Geological Survey issued a draft solicitation Friday for its departmentwide Cloud Hosting Services (CHS) III contract. Under the indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract, Interior looks to “establish enterprise cloud services brokers to manage a portfolio of cloud computing, storage and application services across multiple vendor offerings, supplying DOI with a flexible solution for the delivery of those cloud services.”

“This will result in profound changes in the DOI computing environment, technology refresh and leverage existing efforts, forging a path on how to move pieces of the enterprise to full cloud adoption, significantly improving DOI’s delivery of enhancements to each of DOI’s unique bureaus and service delivery programs, driving down information technology (IT) sustainment costs, and enabling resources to fund high priority emerging requirements,” says the draft request for quotes.

Specifically, Interior wants a partner to build a “Virtual Private Cloud” environment. Overseeing that, the cloud broker will “procure ‘third-party’ services from vendors that provide services on a rental or ‘pay as you go’ nature that are designed to enhance or complement the CSP environment associated with the award.”


The contract will have a five-year base and three two-year options to extend.

Throughout the proposed solicitation, the department stresses the importance of moving agencies across Interior to a more standard, shared services IT experience away from local data centers while also providing flexibility for each of those agencies’ distinct IT needs and environments, as directed in the 2019 federal Cloud Smart policy.

This new CHS III acquisition comes as Interior’s Foundation Cloud Hosting Services contract, awarded to a group of 10 contractors in 2013 with a total ceiling of $10 billion, is set to expire next year. That contract saw a lengthy bid protest process led by losing bidder Centurylink.

At the same time, the General Services Administration is working on a governmentwide cloud blanket purchase agreement called Ascend as a part of the agency’s larger effort to develop a “Cloud Marketplace” for the federal government. With the eventual BPA, GSA wants to “provide a streamlined method for government agencies to acquire and implement secure, integrated commercial cloud service solutions, including cloud focused labor services.”

Feedback on Interior’s draft solicitation is due by June 24. Prior to that, the department will hold an industry day on June 15.

Billy Mitchell

Written by Billy Mitchell

Billy Mitchell is Senior Vice President and Executive Editor of Scoop News Group's editorial brands. He oversees operations, strategy and growth of SNG's award-winning tech publications, FedScoop, StateScoop, CyberScoop, EdScoop and DefenseScoop. After earning his journalism degree at Virginia Tech and winning the school's Excellence in Print Journalism award, Billy received his master's degree from New York University in magazine writing while interning at publications like Rolling Stone.

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