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The American Concrete Institute last week announced Miyamoto International-engineered Hale Medical Center as its 2014 Outstanding Performance in Design and Engineering Concrete Award winner.

Four-story tilt-up structures in earthquake-prone Southern California are still somewhat of a wonder, but earthquake engineering mitigates risk to ensure they are safe while also making such buildings resilient.

“I told them, ‘If you can lift it, we can design it,” Principal Structural Engineer Francis Lo said of the four-story design. Tilt-ups are remarkable in their ability to save building owners time and money.

The center opened June 1. Seeing the walls go up was exciting for bystanders watching the construction process. Large cranes lifted 25 massive concrete and steel tilt-up panels into place in a matter of days to build the 74,400-square-foot medical center. The largest panel covered more than 1,300 square feet and weighed about 160,000 pounds.

Today’s tilt-ups can provide design intricacies with advanced engineering not previously envisioned. The Hale Medical Center and companion pedestrian bridge show off the evolution of tilt-ups and their ability to save building owners money while also building a quality structure.

“Miyamoto, they bring all the expertise… taking into account the seismic area that we are in” said the contractor, Richard T. Hale III of The Hale Corp. “That’s why we hired Miyamoto.”

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