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Accelerating Healing

A revolutionary technology was introduced in 1990 that added a powerful weapon to the arsenal in the fight against cancer. More than two decades later, the second facility in the Western U.S. to offer this radically-different treatment was underway in San Diego, CA. Unlike less precise conventional X-ray radiation, proton therapy’s more “aggressive approach” to destroying cancerous tumors focuses on potent doses of a high-speed proton beam that is accelerated to approximately 100,000 miles per second and can be shaped in three dimensions to target tumors with pinpoint accuracy while eliminating damage to surrounding healthy tissue and reducing side effects.

Thanks to Advanced Particle Therapy, LLC, a company that delivers completely turnkey proton treatment centers to cutting-edge healthcare providers from coast-to-coast, patients of Scripps Health have access to this state-of-the-art technology through the California Proton Treatment Center. The $185-million center, which is the only one in the state to offer full diagnostic services that includes MRI, CT scan and PET CT scan rooms, as well as space dedicated to research and an unprecedented total of five treatment rooms, was expected to be treating up to 2,400 patients annually by the first quarter of 2013.

Experience Counts—Understanding the Nuances

Senior Project Manager Steve Meek was at the helm of the premier healthcare facility design-builder in the country, The Haskell Company, which served in a multi-faceted capacity as general contractor, architect and electrical engineer. As electrical subcontractor, Berg’s specialized experience in imaging installations and the latest hospital technologies proved particularly valuable on the California Proton Treatment Center.

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In the Thick of Things—Surmounting an Unparalleled Conduit Installation

In order to isolate the proton particles, each of the five treatment rooms, which are lined up side-by-side within the 102,000-sf facility, is separated by mammoth 14-foot-thick concrete walls. Supporting the massive weight of the interior walls are rebar mats spaced closely together at 10-inches-on-center intervals, which severely restricts the area within which Berg was able to perform electrical installation.

Within this heavy-duty structure, Bergelectric crews installed perfectly-spaced conduit that connects a single 90-ton cyclotron to each of the treatment rooms. Additional precautions, such as installing back-to-back 90-degree radii to ensure the protons cannot escape, were also taken by Berg field personnel.

Further challenging available work space, the wall pours averaged 500 yards of concrete and required up to 55,000 pounds of rebar.

102,000-square feet

Electrical Construction Cost
$6.5 Million

August 2010 – June 2013

Delivery Method
Design Assist

Other Team Members
Haskell Company

Berg Regional Office
San Diego




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