Vote of confidence for the future of proton therapy and research in SA

26 Oct 2020
Vote of confidence for the future of proton therapy and research in SA

The developers behind the construction of the Australian Bragg Centre for Proton Therapy and Research, Commercial & General, have sold the building in what’s been described as a vote of confidence in South Australia’s burgeoning health and medical research sector.

SAHMRI will be a major tenant of the new building once it’s completed in 2023. The institute will expand its existing research programs into three above-ground floors and will oversee the development of Australia’s first proton therapy and research unit across the three underground levels.

SAHMRI Executive Director, Professor Steve Wesselingh, welcomed the sale to the real estate investment trust, Dexus.

“We at SAHMRI, working with the State and Federal Governments and the Developer C&G have for some time been extremely excited about how this project will transform health care and medical research in Australia and our region,” he said.

“To see a strong, independent investment firm such as Dexusshare that excitement and back the project is enormously encouraging.”

The sale of the building, for $446.2 million, will have no material effect on SAHMRI, which continues to work with Commercial & General and the State Government to see the development completed.

Construction of the Australian Bragg Centre will support 1000 jobs and generate an estimated $1 billion in economic activity.

Once operational, the proton therapy unit will treat up to 700 patients per year with around half of those expected to be children or young adults.

“The precise nature of proton therapy enables cancers to be targeted directly with minimal damage to surrounding healthy tissues,” Professor Wesselingh said.

“This makes it an extraordinarily valuable treatment option for tumours that are close to vital organs and in particular those in children, whose bodies are still developing.”

The Australian Bragg Centre is named in honour of Adelaide-born physicist Sir William Lawrence Bragg and his father William Henry Bragg who together won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1915 for their part in the development of X-ray crystallography.