EXTRAMURAL RESEARCH FACILITIES IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM

Release Date:  August 21, 2001 (see NOT-RR-02-011)

PA NUMBER:  PAR-01-130

National Center for Research Resources

Application Receipt Dates:  October 1 and February 1, annually

PURPOSE

The National Center for Research Resources (NCRR) is authorized under 
Sections 481A and 481B of the Public Health Services Act, as amended by 
Sections 303 and 304 of Public Law (PL) 106-505, to “make grants or 
contracts to public and nonprofit private entities to expand, remodel, 
renovate, or alter existing research facilities or construct new 
research facilities.”  The facilities will be used for basic and 
clinical biomedical and behavioral research and research training. 

HEALTHY PEOPLE 2010

The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to achieving the health 
promotion and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy People 2010," a 
PHS led national activity for setting priority areas. This Program 
Announcement (PA), Extramural Research Facilities Construction 
Projects, is related to one or more of the priority areas.  Potential 
applicants may obtain a copy of  "Healthy People 2010" at 
http://www.health.gov/healthypeople/.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS 

Under Section 481A of the PHS Act, domestic, non-Federal, public and 
private non-profit institutions, organizations, and associations that 
conduct or support biomedical or behavioral research are eligible to 
apply, including, for example, allied health professional schools.  In 
response to this PA, an institution may submit two applications to the 
Research Facilities Improvement Program in the same fiscal year for 
projects that encompass different scopes.  However, only one 
application per Entity Identification Number is allowed.

Applications are encouraged from institutions of emerging excellence, 
which are defined as recipients of a “Center of Excellence” award in 
the fiscal year preceding the fiscal year in which an application is 
submitted in response to this PA.  Centers of Excellence (COE) awards 
are made by the Division of  Health Professions Diversity, Bureau of 
Health Professions, Health Resources and Services Administration, DHHS. 
A list of the Centers of Excellence, and further information about this 
program can be found at URL http://bhpr.hrsa.gov/kidscareers/coe.htm.  
The telephone number for additional information on the COE awards is 
301-443-2100. 

For this PA, the needs of smaller and developing institutions will be 
given special consideration.  

MECHANISM OF SUPPORT 

This PA will use the NIH research facilities construction grant 
mechanism (C06). Responsibility for the planning, direction, and 
execution of the proposed project will be solely that of the applicant. 
The total project period for an application submitted in response to 
this PA may not exceed five years and no facilities and administrative 
(F&A) costs or continuation costs will be awarded. The initial budget 
period is usually 2 years in length, although extensions may be 
requested. All funds must be obligated within 5 years from the date of 
award. The awards will be issued during June and September. 

Matching funds ($1 to $1) will be required for the specific project 
awarded in Fiscal Year 2002. Matching funds must be non-Federal funds 
set aside for this project and must be “in hand” at the time the award 
is made. Under Section 481A, up to 50 percent of the necessary and 
allowable costs of a project may be awarded: grant funds may not be 
used for the acquisition of land or for off-site improvements. The 
maximum award amount will be $3.0 million for applications from Centers 
of Excellence under section 736 of the PHS Act as amended by PL 105-
392, and $ 2.0 million for other applicant institutions. Regional 
Primate Research Centers (RPRCs) will be required to provide matching 
funds in a ratio of 1 to 4 ($1 for each $4 of  Federal funds provided) 
for a maximum award of $ 2.0 million. A description of the sources of 
non-Federal funding for the project (both matching funds and funds 
needed to complete the total project) must be provided with the 
application. A letter committing matching funds must accompany 
the application and provide assurance of commitment from an appropriate 
institutional official authorized to commit funds at the institution. 

Applications proposing a Federal share of less than $500 thousand or 
more than the maximum Federal award amount specified above will not be 
accepted.  Because the nature and scope of the activities proposed in 
response to this PA may vary, it is anticipated that the size of awards 
will vary also.  In unusual and compelling circumstances, the Director, 
NCRR, may waive some or all of the requirement for non-Federal matching 
funds [Section 481A (e)(4) of the Public Health Service Act as amended 
by Public Law 106-505].  For additional information, please refer to 
URL: http://www.ncrr.nih.gov/resinfra/pawaiver.pdf.  

ALLOWABLE COSTS

Facility construction that may be supported under this program includes 
construction of new facilities, additions to existing buildings, 
completion of uninhabitable "shell" space in new or existing buildings, 
and major alterations and renovations. The acquisition and installation 
of fixed equipment such as casework, fume hoods, large autoclaves, or 
biological safety cabinets are allowed. Support for instrumentation or 
equipment that usually would be requested as part of a research project 
grant will not be provided.  NOTE: THE USE OF THESE FEDERAL FUNDS TO 
BUILD "SHELL" SPACE OR ACQUIRE LAND OR MAKE OFF-SITE IMPROVEMENTS IS 
NOT ALLOWED.   

RESEARCH OBJECTIVES 

The principal objective of this program is to facilitate and enhance 
the conduct of PHS-supported biomedical and behavioral research by 
supporting the costs of designing and constructing non-Federal basic 
and clinical research facilities to meet the biomedical or behavioral 
research, research training, or research support needs of an 
institution or a research area at an institution. 

URLs IN NIH GRANT APPLICATIONS OR APPENDICES

All applications and proposals for NIH funding must be self-contained 
within specified page limitations. Unless otherwise specified in an NIH 
solicitation, internet addresses (URLs) should not be used to provide 
information necessary to the review because reviewers are under no 
obligation to view the Internet sites. Reviewers are cautioned that 
their anonymity may be compromised when they directly access an 
Internet site.

APPLICATION PROCEDURES 

Applicants must use Standard Form 424, "Application for Federal 
Assistance," modified in accordance with the instructions contained in 
the document “Application Information and Supplemental Instructions: 
Extramural Research Facilities Construction Projects.”  The applicant’s 
full street address is required in column # 5 of the Standard Form 424.  
Application forms and the supplemental instructions required for 
completing them may be requested from the program official listed under 
INQUIRIES or downloaded from our web site 
(http://www.ncrr.nih.gov/resinfra/resfac.pdf). Interested individuals 
are advised to consult with appropriate officials at their institution 
before completing the application forms. 

The Principal Investigator should be a highly placed institutional 
official, at the level of Dean or equivalent, who has the 
responsibility for allocation of space for the biomedical or behavioral 
research and research training addressed in the submitted application. 

The completed signed original and one exact photocopy of the signed 
application must be submitted to: 

CENTER FOR SCIENTIFIC REVIEW 
NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH 
6701 ROCKLEDGE DRIVE, ROOM 1040 MSC 7710 
BETHESDA, MD 20892-7710 
BETHESDA, MD 20817 (express/courier)
TELEPHONE: (301) 435-0715

At the time of submission, one additional copy of the application (with 
appendices, if any) must be sent under separate cover to: 

Dr. D.G. Patel
Office of Review
National Center for Research Resources
6705 Rockledge Drive, Room 6018 - MSC 7965
Bethesda, MD 20892-7965
Bethesda, MD 20817 (express/courier)
Telephone: (301) 435-0824
Email: dgpatel@ncrr.nih.gov 

o  Intergovernmental Review -- Executive Order 12372

Applicants are required to comply with Executive Order (E.O.) 12372 as 
implemented by 45 CFR Part 100, Intergovernmental Review of Department 
of Health and Human Services Programs and Activities. E.O. 12372 sets 
up a system for state and local government review of proposed Federal 
assistance applications. Applicants (other than federally recognized 
Indian tribal governments) should contact their State Single Point of 
Contact (SPOC) as early as possible to alert them to the prospective 
applications and receive any necessary instructions on the state 
process. For proposed projects serving more than one state, the 
applicant is advised to contact the SPOC of each affected state. A 
current list of SPOCs is included in the supplemental instructions 
(States without a SPOC do not participate in this process). The 
SPOC must be given 60 days to review a construction grant application. 
Applicants are to provide the SPOC with a copy of the application NOT 
LATER THAN the time the application is submitted to the Center for 
Scientific Review (CSR), NIH. Applications submitted to NIH in response 
to this solicitation must contain either SPOC comments or documentation 
indicating the date on which the application was submitted to the SPOC 
for review. The SPOC comment period ends 60 days after the application 
receipt date. The granting agency does not guarantee to "accommodate or 
explain" state process recommendations it receives after that date. 

All SPOC comments must be forwarded to both the applicant and to the 
NCRR Program Official listed under INQUIRIES. If comments are
provided by the SPOC, the applicant may wish to submit to the NIH a 
statement of its reaction to the comments and any appropriate changes 
to its application.  If no response is received from the SPOC by the 
end of the 60 days allotted for review of the application, the 
applicant must notify the NIH that no response was received. 

o  Public Disclosure

Applicants must make a public disclosure of the project by publication 
and describe its environmental impact at the time the SPOC is notified. 
It is suggested that the notice be published in a large-circulation 
newspaper in the area. This public disclosure is required by Section 
102 of the National Environment Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969 and by 
Federal Executive Order 11514. An example is provided in the “Applicant 
Information and Supplemental Instructions”. 

o  Design Standards

Design requirements serve to protect the health and safety of persons 
using the proposed facility, assure that the new facility is accessible 
to and useable by the physically handicapped, control the project's 
impact on the natural environment, conserve energy resources, achieve 
economy in construction costs, and protect against natural disasters 
such as earthquake and flood. 

Specific Considerations in Writing and the Review of the C06 
Application 

The schematic line drawings must be part of the application and easy to 
read. Drawings must clearly indicate all construction and renovations. 
Safety aspects must be incorporated in the design. The facility 
location must be identified with regard to related research facilities. 
The drawings must indicate egress routes and the relationship of rooms. 
All related specialized facilities and the location of major equipment 
must be shown. 

Provide an organizational chart of the institution that defines the 
administrative authority.  

Fully justify the cost of the construction. Provide precise cost 
estimates and vendor quotes when available. 

Justify the space requirements for support staff.
 
Clearly describe the impact of the proposed construction on PHS-funded 
research for both existing and future research projects.  Provide a 
table that list current and pending research grants and indicate the 
principal investigator, grant number, source and amount of funding, and 
start and end dates. 

Provide succinct descriptions of specific research activities that will 
benefit from the proposed construction. Do not provide a description of 
global research activities at the institution. 

Provide biographical sketches (2 pages) of only investigators who 
will be major users of  the proposed facilities, the principal 
investigator and the program director. 

Limit appendices to only additional information relevant to the 
proposed project. Do not submit general institutional reports. 

Special considerations for an animal facility should include:
o  A detailed description of any biohazard issues.
o  A description of the veterinary support.
o  The training and continued education programs for veterinary staff.
o  A detailed animal census.
o  A description of which animals are used for each project.
o  A description of the composition and procedures of the Institutional 
Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC).
o  A description of appropriate procedures to ensure that the facility 
will be used as intended.

Facility design considerations:

Architectural
o  Conformance to NIH Guidelines, National Life Safety Code and local 
codes 
o  Occupancy category 
o  Site adjacency and National Fire Protection Agency compliance
o  Building zoning/adjacency such as public, semi private, private 
o  Functional adjacency
o  Proposed conceptual layout
o  Net and gross square feet of proposed layout
o  Biological Safety Level Category
o  List of containment devices in each room
o  Traffic pattern (users, material, animal, patients) 
o  Hazardous waste management
o  Waste management
o  Pest management control
o  Coordination between all disciplines

Mechanical:
o  Proposed HVAC system (equipment, distribution)
o  Proposed Hydronic system (equipment, distribution)
o  Proposed room by room pressurization control
o  Proposed vibration and noise control criteria 
o  Proposed room by room temperature and humidity control 
o  Proposed HVAC system operation during normal and emergency cycle
o  Scientific program standard operating procedures (SOP) during HVAC 
system failure

Plumbing:
o  Proposed specialty systems (water purification, animal water feed, 
special liquid or gases)
o  Proposed potable and  non-potable water systems

Fire Protection:
o  Proposed fire protection barriers
o  Proposed  sprinkler system 
o  Proposed fire alarm system

Electrical:
o  Conformance to National Electrical Code
o  Proposed electrical distribution system (normal, emergency, UPS)
o  Proposed room lighting 
o  Proposed security system
o  Proposed telephone/data/LAN distribution system
o  Proposed equipment monitoring system
 
List of references for the design of facilities supported through the 
Research Facilities Improvement Program:

o  NIH Design and Policy Guidelines, http://des.od.nih.gov

o  Primary Containment for Biohazards: Selection, Installation 
and Use of Biological Safety Cabinets, CDC/NIH

o  Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories, 
CDC/NIH 

o  Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, National 
Research Council, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C. 1996

Review Considerations 

Upon receipt, applications will be reviewed for completeness by the CSR 
and responsiveness by NCRR. Those applications judged to be 
unresponsive, incomplete, or ineligible will be returned to the 
applicant. Applications that are complete and responsive will be 
reviewed for scientific and technical merit by the Scientific and 
Technical Review Board on Biomedical and Behavioral Research Facilities 
established for this purpose by the NCRR using the review criteria 
stated below. As part of the initial merit review, a process may be 
used by the initial review group in which all applications receive a 
written critique and undergo a process in which only those applications 
deemed to have the highest scientific merit, generally the top half of 
the applications under review, will be discussed, assigned a priority 
score, and receive a second level review by the National Advisory 
Research Resources Council.

Applications will be evaluated on the basis of criteria intended to 
assess the following overall questions: (1) To what extent will the 
proposed change in the research environment facilitate the applicant 
institution's ability to conduct, expand, improve, or maintain 
biomedical/behavioral research? (2) Explain how the proposed project 
will meet unmet national health needs for biomedical/behavioral 
research, research training and/or research support facilities?

Reviewers will also consider the following factors: 

o  The impact of the proposed construction on existing and future PHS-
supported biomedical and behavioral research, research training and/or 
research support activities. 

o  The impact of the proposed construction on the planned advancement 
or expansion of the research and research training activities at 
institutions with limited PHS support. 

o  Appropriateness and suitability of the proposed facilities, 
including safety and biohazard aspects, for the research to be 
conducted and/or research support and training to be provided. 

o  Specific deficiencies in the existing research facilities that would 
be remedied and the impact of the proposed project on current and 
future research activities. 

o  The appropriateness of the proposed physical location and layout of 
the new facility and the reasonableness of the proposed time-course, 
cost and sequence for the construction. 

o  Adequacy of the proposed administrative arrangements with respect to 
institutional commitment to use the space for biomedical/behavioral 
research, research training and/or research support and the 
capabilities of the Principal Investigator and staff for scientific and 
fiscal administration of the facility.

AWARD CRITERIA 

Factors considered in making awards include the merit of the proposal; 
the needs of the institution, with special consideration for small 
institutions as well as institutions designated as Centers of 
Excellence; the commitment by the institution of funds needed to 
complete the project; the availability of appropriated funds; prior 
receipt of a construction award from this program; and geographic 
distribution. 

Award Conditions 

The grantee will begin a process of design approval with the NIH 
Division of Engineering Services (DES) after acknowledging receipt of 
the Notice of Grant Award. This consists of three stages of submission 
of design documents. Two sets each of Schematic Design, Design 
Development and Final Construction Design Documents will be submitted 
at Stages 1, 2, and 3, respectively.  The documents will include 
detailed cost estimates and are required for final review and approval 
by the DES and NCRR before bids and proposals can be solicited by the 
grantee for the construction contract. Advertisement for construction 
bids and construction may be initiated only after receipt of the 
construction grant award and subsequent approval of the working 
drawings and specifications by NCRR staff. 

Early in the design process, applicants are encouraged to review the 
"NIH Grants Policy Statement," which is available on-line at 
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps/policy_stmt.htm.  The 
sections related to public policy requirements and construction (i.e. 
Part III) are particularly relevant. NO REQUESTS TO INITIATE 
CONSTRUCTION, CONSISTENT WITH NIH POLICY, WILL BE ENTERTAINED PRIOR TO 
RECEIPT OF A CONSTRUCTION GRANT AWARD FROM NIH AND SUBSEQUENT APPROVAL 
OF WORKING DRAWINGS AND SPECIFICATIONS BY NCRR STAFF. 

The facility must be utilized for biomedical or behavioral research 
purposes for which it was constructed for at least 20 years beginning 
90 days following completion of the construction project. Any lease 
agreement must cover a time period sufficient for the usage requirement 
and be a minimum of 20 years in length from the completion of the 
facility.  An annual progress report is required for 20 years Federal 
interest in the facility as a condition of this award and must include 
a list of publications “originating from the use” of this project 
facility.  This list should be limited to those scientific papers 
acknowledging NCRR support including grant numbers.  Failure to comply 
with the 20-year utilization requirement will result in recovery of the 
Federal share of the value of the facility in accordance with Federal 
Regulations at 45 CFR 74.32. 

INQUIRIES 

Inquiries concerning this PA are encouraged. Direct inquiries regarding 
programmatic issues, requests for application Standard Form 424, 
application supplemental instructions, and SPOC comments, if any, to: 

Dr. Willie D. McCullough
Division of Research Infrastructure
National Center for Research Resources
6705 Rockledge Drive, Room 6132 - MSC 7965
Bethesda, MD  20892-7965
Telephone:  (301) 435-0766
FAX:  (301) 480-3770
Email:  mcculloughw@ncrr.nih.gov 

Direct inquiries regarding technical programmatic issues (engineering 
and architectural) to:

Mr. Esmail Torkashvan, P.E. 
Division of Research Infrastructure
National Center for Research Resources
6705 Rockledge Drive, Room 6136 - MSC 7965
Bethesda, MD  20892-7965
Telephone:  (301) 435-0766
FAX:  (301) 480-3770
Email:  torkashvane@ncrr.nih.gov 

Questions regarding fiscal matters may be directed to:

Mr. Paul Karadbil
Office of Grants Management
National Center for Research Resources
6705 Rockledge Drive, Room 6086, MSC 7965
Bethesda, MD  20892-7965
Telephone:  (301) 435-0844
Email:  paulk@ncrr.nih.gov 

AUTHORITY AND REGULATIONS 

This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance 
No. 93.389. Awards are made under authorization of Sections 481A and 
481B of the Public Health Services Act, as amended by Sections 303 and 
304 of Public Law (PL) 106-505 and administered under NIH grants 
policies and Federal Regulations 42 CFR 52 and 45 CFR Part 74. 
Applicants are required to comply with Executive Order 12372 as 
supplemented by 45 CFR Part 100, Intergovernmental Review of Health and 
Human Services Programs and Activities. 

The PHS strongly encourages all grant and contract recipients to 
provide a smoke-free workplace and promote the non-use of all tobacco 
products. In addition, Public Law 103-227, the Pro-Children Act of 
1994, prohibits smoking in certain facilities (or in some cases, any 
portion of a facility) in which regular or routine education, library, 
day care, health care or early childhood development services are 
provided to children. This is consistent with the PHS mission to 
protect and advance the physical and mental health of the American 
people.


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