Ashtabula County Underwater Archaeology Survey Request for Proposals


REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS 

Ashtabula County Underwater Archaeology Survey 

The Ohio History Connection’s State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) seeks professional consultant services for completion of a survey to identify and evaluate marine cultural resources within the Lake Erie waters of Ashtabula County, Ohio. The survey area for this project will include areas of higher potential for submerged cultural resources within an estimated 30 square miles of the approximately 30 linear-mile Ashtabula County shoreline area. To date, three shipwrecks have been previously identified within this area and no professional archaeological survey has been conducted. Results of this project will be used as a model for the planning of future surveys within Lake Erie, the coordination of relevant federal and state projects under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, and for disaster planning in Ohio waters as it relates to marine cultural resources. The available funding for this project, which is supported by Hurricane Sandy Disaster Relief funds (CFDA 15.957), is $40,000-$60,000.

Project Overview: The Ashtabula County Underwater Archaeology Survey project will entail background research and survey to identify and evaluate underwater resources in the Ashtabula County waters of Lake Erie through:  

  • Conducting a thorough archaeological, historical, and archival records check on known and potential maritime cultural resources in a portion of the Ashtabula County waters of Lake Erie;
     
  • Conducting geophysical survey and ground-truthing selected anomalies to document examples of resources including shipwrecks, piers and similar shore structures, and locations that would have been well-suited for occupation in prehistory;
     
  • Preparing a survey report that includes historic context information, survey strategy and methods, recorded anomalies, recorded resources, and preliminary evaluation of some resources for National Register of Historic Places eligibility.

Scope of Work: An underwater archaeological survey will be undertaken to identify geophysical anomalies within the survey area that appear consistent with historic shipwrecks and/or maritime structures. The locations of and information about all identified geophysical anomalies, including anomalies that do not appear consistent with submerged cultural resources, will be documented and reported to the SHPO. At least 10 of these anomalies must be ground-truthed to determine whether the anomalies are, in fact, archaeological sites. Any of the anomalies determined to be archaeological sites are to be recorded in a database application provided by SHPO. The survey is intended to both identify and record previously undocumented resources as well as to confirm the location of suspected or previously noted resources. The survey project will meet the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards and Guidelines for Identification and Evaluation and will follow the State Historic Preservation Office’s Archaeology Guidelines as well as the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s (BOEM’s) Office of Renewable Energy Programs’ Guidelines for Providing Archaeological and Historic Property Information (Section III, pp. 5-11) regarding underwater geophysical archaeological survey. The survey project will use relevant guidance for research and evaluation provided in National Register Bulletin 20: Nominating Historic Vessels and Shipwrecks to the National Register of Historic Places. 

The consultant will be required to:

  • Attend a kick-off meeting with the State Historic Preservation Office staff at the beginning of the project to: 
    • Discuss proposed survey methodology and anticipated property types to be surveyed;
    • Develop and discuss a specific research design and research questions about the maritime cultural resources that must be addressed in the survey work.
       
  • Schedule and meet with interested individuals, local officials, and relevant contacts likely to have knowledge of maritime cultural resources in the project area. This could include maritime history and heritage organizations, avocational underwater archaeologists, dive shops, diving groups, and other maritime businesses and industries, all of which may be able to provide historic background and research sources.
     
  • Conduct historical and archival research at local and state repositories
     
  • Conduct underwater geophysical survey of areas of higher potential for submerged cultural resources
     
  • Submit an interim report for the State Historic Preservation Office to review and comment upon that includes the results of processing and analysis of the geophysical survey data and selection of the anomalies chosen for ground-truthing prior to the initiation of ground-truthing.
     
  • Record relevant data on all identified sites, out of the 10 ground-truthed anomalies, and document these sites in a database application to be provided by the State Historic Preservation Office. 
     
  • Prepare a comprehensive survey report that includes an abstract, introduction, research design, background research, field methods, results of field investigation, conclusions, bibliography, appendices, maps of overall survey areas, information on all identified anomalies, an assessment of the significance of the inventoried properties based on National Register of Historic Places criteria and integrity requirements, and a list of properties that may qualify for nomination to the National Register of Historic Places. The survey report must follow the outline provided in the State Historic Preservation Office’s Archaeology Guidelines.
    • The appendices should contain information about the geophysical survey and identified anomalies similar to that described in BOEM’s Office of Renewable Energy Programs’ Guidelines for Providing Archaeological and Historic Property Information, Section IV, pp. 19-21.
       
  • Provide digital copies of relevant images of ground-truthed properties, the raw and processed geophysical survey data, and appropriate metadata for archiving at the State Historic Preservation Office.

Deliverables:

  • Completed forms for all identified archaeological sites using a database application provided by the State Historic Preservation Office 
     
  • Interim report for the State Historic Preservation Office to review and comment upon that is prepared after the geophysical survey is conducted and results are processed, including anomalies chosen for ground-truthing. The report must be submitted and reviewed by the State Historic Preservation Office prior to the initiation of ground-truthing.
     
  • Survey report meeting Secretary of the Interior’s Standards and Guidelines for Identification and Evaluation and the State Historic Preservation Office’s Archaeology Guidelines. Two printed copies and a digital PDF copy required. 
     
  • CD or DVD of high resolution images of ground-truthed properties and recorded properties for use in future SHPO publications, web site, and presentations (minimum 5MP camera or higher, on “Best” image quality setting).
     
  • Digital copies of raw and processed geophysical survey data and appropriate metadata for archiving at the State Historic Preservation Office.

Timeline and Schedule: The timeframe for the Ashtabula County Underwater Archaeology Survey project is approximately 18 months. The project start date is July 1, 2017 and the end date for all reports and deliverables must be not later than December 31, 2018. 

Selection: Selection will be made by June 21, 2017. The project principal(s) must meet federal professional qualification standards as published in the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards and Guidelines for Archaeology and Historic Preservation, 48 FR 44716, in the area of Archaeology. Selection will be based on the following criteria:

  • Qualifications of firm and project principal investigator(s)
  • Degree to which proposal addresses Scope of Work
  • Relevance of prior experienceAbility to complete project in a timely manner
  • Cost to complete project inclusive of all fees

Submittals: Interested parties are to submit the following by June 5, 2017:

  • Background information of firm and principal(s)
  • Narrative discussing project methodology and project approach
  • Estimated schedule for completion of project. Schedule must include survey methodology tasks and a timeline with milestones identified for deliverables. Milestones must include: estimated dates of completion of geophysical survey, interim report submission, completion of ground-truthing, completion of inventory forms, final survey report.
  • Demonstration of prior relevant experience
  • Cost to complete the project inclusive of all fees

Submit to: 
Ashtabula County Underwater Archaeology Survey Project
State Historic Preservation Office
Ohio History Connection
800 E. 17th Avenue
Columbus, OH 43211-2474

For questions, contact Project Reviews Manager Kendra Kennedy at 614-298-2000 or via e-mail: [email protected]

Posted May 11, 2017
Topics: Historic PreservationArchaeology

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