By Brian Johnson
Dolan Media Newswires
Minneapolis — Mayo Clinic’s vision for a new proton beam therapy program includes ambitious plans for new construction.
The program — part of Mayo’s plans for a three-site cancer center in Minnesota, Arizona and Florida — requires construction of a $188 million, 100,000-square-foot treatment facility in Rochester.
The building will include space for four treatment rooms.
Mayo expects to construct a similar building near the Mayo Clinic Specialty building in Phoenix.
Each of the projects is expected to create 500 construction jobs. More than 120 new staff members, including nine physicians and 10 physicists, will work at the Rochester building when it is completed.
Mayo wants to complete building design within 14 months and open the first treatment rooms by late 2014 or early 2015. The third and fourth rooms will be opened six to 12 months after that.
The construction schedule includes time for tasks such as installation of the proton beam system (18 months in the first two treatment rooms) and proton beam testing, commissioning and acceptance (six months), according to Mayo.
Mayo will use proceeds from its capital budget and benefactor support to pay for the projects.
It’s too early to say when design and construction bids will be awarded, according to Nicole Bennett Englerm, public affairs consultant for Mayo Clinic.
Mayo Clinic treats more than 20,000 patients for cancer every year. The new proton therapy treatment is designed to allow “greater control over radiation doses, shorter treatment times and fewer side effects,” according to a Mayo press release.