The Pentagon has awarded a Texas firm a $43 million contract to build a 750-mile underwater fiber-optic cable between this remote Navy base in Cuba and Puerto Rico.
It is a backup spur to one linking Guantánamo to Dania Beach in South Florida that went live in early 2016.
The Defense Information Systems Agency disclosed the non-competitive contract was awarded to Xtera Communications Inc. in Allen, Texas, the firm that put in the original 950-mile underwater link and subsequently filed for bankruptcy. It should be up and working by Aug. 21, 2019.
The first cable was predicted to cost $40 million; but subsequent disclosures suggested it was actually done for about $35 million.
The Pentagon announcement said, without explanation, that the “face value” of the Puerto Rico link “is $36,540,732” but reported “the total cumulative face value of the contract is $43,139,763.”
Congress provided the funds in a 2016 Army budget. The award comes at a time when the Pentagon is pursuing close to $500 million in additional construction at the base.