Visitor Center Exhibit Fabrication and Installation
Louisiana > Houma Area Convention & Visitor's Bureau
RFQ: 2968203
Listing Information/Advertisement:

Houma Area Convention & Visitors Bureau
114 Tourist Drive
Gray, LA 70359
Qualifications-Based Solicitation (RFQ)
for Interpretive Media Fabrication and Installation
The Houma Area Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) has a requirement for the project stated below.  If you are interested in being considered for the project, please submit answers to the questions listed in this solicitation along with the requested supporting information.
Selections will be based on qualifications and best value.  The target production budget has been set by the CVB.  After initial selection the contractor may negotiate with the CVB to adjust the scope and associated costs as desired by the CVB and the contractor.  If agreement on detailed costs cannot be reached, the CVB reserves the right to award the project to the next most-qualified offeror.
The production contractor will be selected by their qualifications, past performance record, technical approach, and availability/interest.  See attached reference materials.
Response to this qualifications solicitation is strictly voluntary; no reimbursement will be made by the CVB to the offeror for any costs associated with providing information in response to this announcement or any follow-up information requests.

Your written response to this solicitation must be in Adobe PDF format and is limited to one page of writing for each of the criteria being considered.  Any supporting images must be submitted in JPG format.
Your submission must be loaded onto a USB flash drive of the appropriate size and delivered to the CVB’s office no later than 4:00PM CDT, on Wednesday, January 6, 2016 or as an email attachment in Adobe PDF format addressed to [email protected]. See the following “Submission Requirements” section for length and formatting details.
After receipt of proposals, the CVB may request a 1) conference call or 2) personal interview with the offeror’s proposed Project Manager.
Proposals and supporting materials shall be delivered to:

Sharon A. Alford, Executive Director,
Houma Area Convention & Visitors Bureau
133314 Tourist Drive
Gray, LA 70359
[email protected]
Questions and Inquiries:
Questions regarding this RFQ may be submitted to Sondra Corbitt at the Houma Area Convention and Visitors Bureau via email ([email protected]) or by phone (985-868-2732); however, no correspondence or verb al conversation shall be considered legally binding.

The Houma Area Convention and Visitors Bureau reserves the right to reject any or all qualifications and proposals and does not bind itself to accept any qualifications or proposals or any part thereof.
Any and all costs associated with developing a response for qualifications and/or proposals, preparing for and/or delivering oral presentations, and any other expenses incurred by the Proposer in responding to this RFQ are entirely the responsibility of the Proposer and shall not be reimbursed in any manner.
Project:  Visitor Center Exhibit Fabrication and Installation
Target Production Budget:    $240,000
Estimated Period of Performance:   January 15, 2016 to May 31, 2016
In responding to this proposal you are indicating that your company is capable of working within the target budget and within the stated performance period.
The purpose of the contract is to provide all labor, services, materials, equipment, and travel necessary to detail, fabricate, transport to the site, and install all specified exhibit elements for the new Houma Area Convention & Visitors Bureau Visitor Center, Gray, LA.  This center is currently under construction, with a tentative facility completion date of May 31, 2016.  The CVB has not established or announced an official dedication or opening date.  The CVB considers the quality and effectiveness of the visitor center and its exhibits to be its top priority.
The exhibits are being planned and designed by Interpretive Direction LLC (ID) of Harpers Ferry, West Virginia.  ID will remain under contract with the CVB through planning, design, fabrication, and installation of the exhibits.
The new visitor / information center is being constructed for the Houma Area Convention & Visitors Bureau located in Gray, Louisiana.  Approximately 1,500 SF of exhibit and lobby space is included in this project. Many of the exhibit structures planned for this space are designed to be movable to accommodate special activities.
The selected contractor will be provided with design intent drawings for all exhibit elements, graphic layout files (including final text and graphics), and completed audiovisual programs.
The contractor will be required to provide and configure all media players, controllers, interface devices, speakers, and related hardware and software to insure successful AV installations.
General Scope of Work
Develop detailed shop drawings from the exhibit designer’s design drawings
Provide technical design services as required for lighting and AV elements.
Provide proofs for review and approval of all graphic production
Fabricate all custom structures, metalwork, millwork, and related exhibit elements
Produce all graphics and graphic mounts
Fabricate all custom models, reproductions, and their mounts
Furnish and install all lighting, audiovisual equipment, and control systems included within exhibit structures and elsewhere as specified
Mount and attach all display objects provided by the CVB or others
Deliver and install all exhibit elements, and provide one-year warranty on all exhibit elements
Provide two (2) maintenance manuals
All work and materials to have the quality and durability consistent with a design life of 10 to 15 years 

Specific Exhibit Components
Locations, dimensions, and preliminary design details are shown in the attached floor plan, typical 3D views, and other drawings.  Also see the Video Program List for details about on-board video programs and components.
Description and Fabrication Requirements
Information Desk
Information desk itself is in the facility contract, NIC.  The exhibit consists of an 8’ x 5’ 3Form® graphic mural panel (NIC) on the wall behind the desk.  Added to the panel will be our layered title/subtitles and logo, possibly digital cutouts.  Dedicated lighting NIC.  Two small felt-bottomed signs for the desktop; acrylic windows will receive color prints made by staff. Desk signs are two-sided.
[Note: the 5x9’ mural is currently in the scope of the facility builder’s contract, but could be moved into the exhibit production contract]
Fixed graphic plus moveable desk signs
Primary Brochure Display
This will be a furniture style exhibit that will display the CVB’s primary brochures and guides. It will feature a rack for the various sizes, and a graphic panel identifying the purpose and use of these flagship handouts.
Cabinet with wheels or desktop skid base
Geography and Land Loss
This exhibit is located along the east wall of the main gallery and is attached to the wall.  The main feature is a map of the Houma area based on the NPS brochure map for Jean Lafitte NHP. A video monitor will display varied wetland environments. Reader rail will have text and graphics on land loss.  Two tactile cutouts will show Louisiana in 1850 and 2050—showing dramatic land loss. Small brochure dispenser. Layered graphics on wall panel. Canopy with dedicated LED lighting. Floor mounted artifact provided by CVB—a typical concrete foundation pier, demonstrating how houses are raised to protect from flooding as land sinks.
Wall exhibit with reader rail

Food and Dining
This is the first of eight (8) thematic exhibits mounted on four (4) moveable “Float” exhibits.  Ex 04 and Ex 05 are mounted back-to-back on a moveable Float Structure.  See the “Float Exhibits” section below and attached drawings for structural details. All floats have LED lighted canopies.
Ex 04 features a background texture with layered graphics.  Reader rail with large brochure dispenser for restaurant brochures.  Flip book with photos of five (5) prepared Cajun dishes.  Back pages of flip also carry images of tabletops. Color tactile model of celery, onion, and green pepper on a cutting board with a knife illustrating the Holy Trinity of Cajun cooking.  Graphics on tower panels.  Framed and decorative chalk board for staff to write in seasonal dishes. Tower pedestal may have an object mounted on top. 
Mardi Gras and Festivals
Ex 05 is mounted opposite Ex 04.  Background mural graphic is of an Egyptian Mardi Gras float at night.  Light bulbs shown in the photo will be illuminated from behind.  Mural supports additional layered graphics.  Video monitor shows festival footage and audio, two separate programs: 1) Mardi Gras and 2) other festivals.  Reader rail features text/graphics as well as a tactile model of half of a King Cake with embedded “baby” exposed.  Tactile panel with Mardi Gras “throw objects” attached—possibly affixed with a layer of clear resin.  Mardi Gras masks mounted on tower pedestals.  Small vitrine on left side. Some display objects supplied by client. Proximity speakers for audio.
Cultural Stories
Ex 06 is mounted opposite Ex 07. Layered graphic panels with three cultural stories told through pictures and text.  The shelf area has a full width vitrine with a glass top.  Objects in the case correspond to the theme panels above.  Changeable labels in acrylic holders.  No brochures or video. Client-supplied tactile display objects likely—durable objects.  May include display objects mounted on tower pedestal. Will include 10” diameter digitally-cut embossed four-color logo of United Houma Nation.
Museums and Historic Sites
Ex 07 is mounted opposite Ex 06 on Float Structure.  Background mural and layered graphics.  Brochure rack and video on reader rail, with drone video footage. Tactile object on background panel or reader rail.  May have object mounted on tower pedestal.  Tactile panel for durable, non-sensitive museum object, probably from Regional Military Museum. No audio. 
Fishing and Boating
Ex 08 is mounted opposite Ex 09. Background mural of estuary fishing scene, with layered graphics applied in neutral areas.  Decorative framed chalk board (made by contractor) for staff to write in seasonal catch species.  Topics includes fish, shellfish, and other local seafood.  Tactile client-supplied objects—fishing tackle and lures, with sharp points and edges removed by contractor. Tactile redfish model or mounted specimen—full size by contractor. Large photo of girl with fish. Brochure rack for charter services and seafood outlets.  No video or audio.
Nature and Wildlife
Ex 09 is mounted opposite Ex 08 on Float Structure.  Panoramic mural of Mandalay NWR extends across background to inner tower panel.  Layered graphics against mural and neutral background.  Brochure rack on shelf for tour operator information.  Contractor-supplied model of a great egret (2 ft. high) on tower pedestal.  Video program showing slow motion of alligator eating. Tactile display object—an alligator head with exposed teeth, coated skin to protect specimen and the public.  Specimen provided by CVB. Modeling and mounting by contractor, all sharp points removed.
Music and Art
This exhibit features video and audio of singer Tab Benoit.  Client controls on/off and volume.  Background wallpaper on main panel is of Tab’s guitar.  Layered graphics on tower panels. Unit has  subwoofer as well as proximity speaker for midrange and high end.  Images feature concerts in town.  Small brochure rack for music venues and art galleries.  Tactile washboard and tethered spoon for low-tech interactive.  Small accordion or other object (by client) mounted on tower pedestal.  Model of a sculpted face from Chauvin Sculpture Garden, color, made from mold or photographs by contractor.
Movies and TV
Ex 11 is mounted opposite Ex 10 on Float Structure.   Background mural with scenes from TV and movies shot on location in Houma.  Large photo panel of television celebrities RJ and Jay Paul for visitor photo-op.  Vitrine with artifact—RJ’s cap.  Video of TV and movie personalities using client footage only; includes audio. Large photo of a tabletop with DVDs and books related to movies shot on location in Houma.  ID will provide photo.  Crazy in Alabama poster with cast signatures mounted on end panel.
Ex 12 is a freestanding, moveable exhibit with no wheels, lighting, video, or audio. The exhibit is designed for the atrium, but can be used elsewhere in the VC or can be transported to other sites as desired.  The exhibit will feature text and graphics, and may have an associated tactile element. A sugar cane pot provided by the client may be seen through the window outside; small outdoor wayside exhibit by contractor identifies pot with historic photo and text.  
Graphic exhibit with optional outdoor sign
Ex 13 is a freestanding, moveable exhibit with no wheels, lighting, video, or audio.  Estimated size is 30”wide by 60’’ high. The exhibit is designed for the atrium, but can be used elsewhere in the VC or can be transported to other sites as desired.  The exhibit will feature text and graphics, and may have an associated tactile element. Estimated size is 30”wide by 60’’ high. Tactile display object provided by CVB.  Option: A small fishing boat provided by the client is seen through window outside; small outdoor wayside exhibit by contractor identifies boat with photo and text.
Graphic exhibit with optional outdoor sign

Main Gallery Mini-theater
The mini-theater function is being replaced by various videos presented in the theme-based float exhibits.  In addition, a large theater float (Ex 15) will allow great flexibility in presenting video or slide programs anywhere in the public spaces.
Main Gallery Theater Float
This major AV float will allow staff to provide video and sound anywhere in the public spaces.  Like the four theme-based interpretive floats, this electronic float will incorporate all electronic equipment to run DVD movies, video footage, PowerPoint shows, music CDs, online content, live TV broadcasts, and any other programming that can be presented on a video display.  It is anticipated that the large video display can be raised higher for events when additional seating is brought into the Main Gallery.  Provide specifications and AV design based on client requirements, provide all AV equipment, controls, wiring, and mounts.  Exhibit designer will advise on appearance and performance issues. 
Video display and presentation system
Building Identification Sign
The Visitor Center identification sign has been made part of the exhibit project.  The fabricator will build and install this two-part unit.  Installation will occur at the same time as exhibit installation.  Graphics and text will differ from what the architect shows, but will remain in the same position. ID will provide design drawing.
Sign components are attached to top and bottom of a brown ledge that is part of the building.  Facility builder will provide concealed electrical boxes. Fabricator will provide light fixtures on the reverse of the signs to achieve the backlighted effect intended by the architect.  Sign elements will be of metal with durable finish.  Metal and finish TBD—possibly stainless steel or aluminum.
A. Upper sign:  CVB logo with associated tagline “Louisiana’s Bayou Country”.  Approx. 2’-8” high.  Tagline may need to be captured in a band.
B. Lower sign:  Text “VISITOR CENTER”. Letters 1’ high. This component attaches to the lower front edge of the ledge.
Architectural sign

Float Exhibits in the Main Gallery
The four (4) Float Structures for Exhibits 04 through 11 are mounted on casters with a content subject on each side; for example, Ex 04, “Food and Dining” on one side and Ex 05 “Mardi Gras and Festivals” on the reverse side.
Floats carry all exhibit content on a standardized set of panels and surfaces such as vertical background panels, reader-rail wedge panels, vertical tower panels, and tower pedestals.
These four (4) Float Structures, which accommodate eight (8) subjects total, are designed to be a modular system with basic panel and shelf areas the same on all four units.  Components resting on the shelf (reader rail) area may be of varying widths and configuration, as long as the total component widths equal the length of the shelf on which they are attached.
The lower section of a float may be built as a single unit which carries two upper sections representing the two exhibit subjects.  The base shall be heavy with respect to the upper sections of the floats, which shall be made of lighter-weight materials to minimize the risk of toppling or tipping over. Float Structures shall withstand a lateral force of 100 pounds applied at 5 ft. AFF without tipping.
The floats are designed to be mounted on four sets of wheels for movability and stability.  We anticipate wheels might be about 4” in diameter. Wheels shall be located under the four corners of the base units.  Wheel sets shall have locking mechanisms.  Offerors may suggest ideas for wheel design.  Wheels shall be largely hidden behind a kick panel or skirt.  Float Structures must have the capability to be rolled by two people over either hard floors or floors with carpet tiles or short-pile carpet tiles and metal transition strips.
Float panels shall have graphic images or textured surfaces as specified by the exhibit designer, and layered text and image panels will be set against the backgrounds (or murals) with standoff pegs or inset blocking.  Where appropriate, some layered graphics will have contoured edges or outline shapes.  All image panels will be applied in such a way as the graphics cannot be “picked” or “dog-eared” by visitors or cleaning staff.
Some Float Structures will feature brochure racks keyed to exhibit topics.  Slots shall be provided for standard brochure sizes, along with divider slots and removable panels to allow flexibility in accommodating different sizes in different configurations. All literature racks shall be custom designed and fabricated to fit the float structures; pre-fabricated commercial dispensers will not be used.
All Float Structures shall have canopies with curved valence panels.  Some of the valences may have images, colors, or textures. An LED lighting system shall be included in the canopies for illumination of the display areas on the floats.  Primary lighting shall provide an even wash onto display panels, however capability for some aimable spotlights would also be advantageous.  On-board dimmers may be useful; the fabricator will advise the design team on options for dimming and controls.
As indicated in the Video Program list, some Floats will carry video monitors.  Monitors will be of two sizes—smaller ones on the reader rail shelf, and larger ones on the vertical panels.  Some will have proximity speakers, while others will be without audio.
Sound spill is a concern, so the fabricator and designer will collaborate to find ways to direct sound primarily to where it is needed.  All units will have on/off and volume controls which can be adjusted by CVB staff but hidden from visitors.
Programs will be controlled by durable touch screens or touch pads. There will be no mechanical pushbuttons activated by visitors.  All monitors will have “attract screens” with options shown.  All Float programs will be of short duration—ranging approximately from 30 seconds to 2 minutes.
Audiovisual equipment will be mounted within the floats, with access panels or doors for servicing.  Where space permits, brochure storage space will be provided in the bases, behind locking doors.
All Floats will be provided with pigtail cord sets that will plug into floor and wall outlets at various locations.  Since Floats will have metal parts and possibly frames, it is important that all wiring and other electrical components be properly installed, grounded, and shall meet all applicable codes for the installation site.  Cords and plugs will not be visible to visitors.  The facility builder is being asked to provide all floor outlets with wells and cover plates; plugs will therefore be recessed when floats are plugged in.
The final design production package from Interpretive Direction (ID) will include copies of all video/audio programs. The fabricator will be responsible for transferring and configuring AV programs to operate properly with the monitors, players, speakers, and other electronic equipment on the floats.  The fabricator will provide recommendations when needed on all aspects of exhibit and AV design.
Atrium Exhibits
Exhibits 12 and 13 are designed for initial placement in the atrium, but will be moveable, furniture style exhibits.  These units are primarily text/graphics, but may have associated small outdoor panels interpreting outdoor display objects.  They will have no on-board lighting, video, or audio.

Qualifications Categories and Rating Criteria
Please answer each of the following questions. Limit response to 1-2 pages or less for each question.  If desired, you may also submit any general brochures or data sheets on your company.
Technical Approach and Key Personnel
Rating value: 25%
Describe how you would approach this project and how in particular you will collaborate with the planning and design firm in selecting the most appropriate and effective production processes and techniques for maximum project quality and cost effectiveness.  Identify your key personnel and state their proposed roles in this project (Attach brief resumes for up to five key personnel).  Explain how your firm would be a good fit for this project.  Explain your availability to meet the project schedule and your strategy for working within the target budget.  Explain how you have acted as the prime fabrication contractor on projects with an estimated range of $100K -$1M.  Do not submit a cost proposal, but discuss any relevant cost considerations under this category.
Also attach brief resumes of key personnel
Samples of Work
Rating value: 30%
List and briefly describe three (3) projects you have completed in the last five years that demonstrate your ability to perform work on projects comparable to the Houma project in terms of budget, program space, and required production technologies.  For each project provide a completion date and a production cost.  In your included flash drive, include a folder for each of the three sample projects and include up to twenty (20) JPG photos showing the quality of work.  Among the photos include one or two wide angle views of each exhibition as a whole as well as several detailed close-up photos which show the quality of graphic reproduction, casework, fit-and-finish, object mounting, interactives, tactile elements, and embedded video.
Pictures should be keyed to each question and placed in labeled folders on your submitted flash drive (see submission details below)

Specialized Facilities, Equipment, Techniques, and Skills
Rating value: 25%
Address your ability to execute required shop detail drawings.  Describe your capabilities with state of the art production equipment, techniques, and technologies for graphic production and the fabrication of custom three-dimensional exhibit elements. Please include any new or innovative capabilities or equipment. Do you have in-house ability to do digital imaging on a variety of surfaces and do you have the ability to do in-house metal structures and high-quality metal finishing? Do you have experience with proximity sound systems for exhibits? Describe your capability to store exhibits for several months in the event that building completion is delayed. In this part of Louisiana hurricanes sometimes impede building projects.
Past Performance Evaluation
Rating value: 20%
Please identify three (3) exhibit fabrication clients we can contact to provide evaluations of your past performance on exhibit fabrication projects during the last five years.  If possible include clients who specialize in interpretive services such as National Park Service sites, museums, and other heritage sites. Clients cited should have direct knowledge of your capability and experience to successfully produce and install a wide variety of exhibit components, including, but not limited to casework, graphics, exhibition lighting, audiovisual presentations, etc.  For each client please provide the project name, brief description including approximate production cost and schedule, and the client’s key representative with their title, organization, address, phone number, email address, and web site address.

Outline of Submission Elements
Here is an outline of the required submission elements.  Submit elements on a small USB flash drive.  Also submit four (4) printed and bound hard copies of the Adobe PDF files listed below as A, B, and C.
A.  Cover letter
[One-page PDF file]
B.  Answers to four (4) questions listed under “Qualifications Categories” above.  Limit each answer to 1-2 pages.
[Single PDF file with answers to all four questions]
C.  Resumes of up to five (5) key personnel for this project.  Your Project Manager must be included.
[Single PDF file with all resumes]
D.  Photographs to illustrate and support answers to Qualification Questions 2 and 3.  These will show samples of project work and views of your facilities, equipment, and processes.
[JPG photo files, recommended file sizes 1-3MB each.  Organize pictures in subfolders according to sample project names or categories of facilities, equipment, and processes. We recommend including about twenty (20) pictures of each sample project. You do not need to submit printed photos.

CVB’s Attachments to this Solicitation
1.  Annotated excerpts from Visitor Center architectural plans
2.  Exhibit list
3.  Floor plan showing exhibits and locations
4.  Float Structure 3D renderings w/ basic dimensions, Exhibit 04
5.  Float Structure graphic surfaces w/ panel dimensions
6.   Video program listing
7.   Building ID Signage Data, Ex 20
DJG Rev 12/01-2015

Additional Notes/Requirements Attachments Compilation 11-09-2015.pdf?dl=0
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Started: 11-Dec-2015 12:00:00 AM CST
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10-Dec-2015 11:37:21 AM CST