Computer Procurement:

FAA's $1.5-Billion Computer Resources Nucleus Project

IMTEC-89-44FS: Published: Mar 31, 1989. Publicly Released: Apr 6, 1989.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) proposed Computer Resources Nucleus Project (CORN), focusing on the project's objectives and cost estimates and FAA project implementation.

GAO found that: (1) the FAA initial CORN cost estimate increased from $148 million in 1986 to $1.5 billion in 1987; (2) the increases were due largely to FAA expansion of the project's scope to include optional processing data for its other system, and to accommodate other data needs; (3) FAA believes that the projected CORN implementation cost was reasonable, since it has not conducted system analyses and feasibility studies; and (4) under CORN, a contractor would provide data-processing service on a fixed, fee-for-service basis, maintain and manage CORN, and convert other FAA computerized information systems to CORN. GAO also found that: (1) the General Services Administration reviewed CORN and indicated that FAA should request benchmark testing to ensure accurate system performance and realistic costs; (2) FAA plans to operate its other systems parallel to CORN at an annual cost of about $46 million until the contractor completes its system conversion; and (3) FAA planned to contract for an estimated $35.5 million in additional work in 1990, because it believed that its staff was insufficient to adequately manage and integrate all of its systems.

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