The Hoover Dam

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  1. 7 Things You Might Not Know About the Hoover Dam - HISTORY
  2. The Colorado River
  3. Are There Bodies Buried In The Hoover Dam?

They blasted tunnels -- as big as four-lane highways -- right through the canyon walls.

7 Things You Might Not Know About the Hoover Dam - HISTORY

For the next five years, the Colorado River gushed through these diversion tunnels while 8, workers toiled in the harsh, dry canyon bottom. Amazingly, they completed the dam in less than five years -- ahead of schedule and under budget.

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The Hoover Dam is a curved gravity dam. Lake Mead pushes against the dam, creating compressive forces that travel along the great curved wall. The canyon walls push back, counteracting these forces. This action squeezes the concrete in the arch together, making the dam very rigid.

The Colorado River

This way, Lake Mead can't push it over. Today, the Hoover Dam is the second highest dam in the country and the 18th highest in the world. It generates more than four billion kilowatt-hours a year -- that's enough to serve 1. Educators' Guide Shop.

Fast Facts: At its base, Hoover Dam is as thick feet as two footballs fields measured end to end. Once the dam type and dimensions were decided, construction bids went out to the public and Six Companies Inc. After the dam was authorized, thousands of workers came to southern Nevada to work on the dam. Las Vegas grew considerably and Six Companies Inc.

Are There Bodies Buried In The Hoover Dam?

Prior to constructing the dam, the Colorado River had to be diverted from Black Canyon. To do this, four tunnels were carved into the canyon walls on both the Arizona and Nevada sides beginning in Once carved, the tunnels were lined with concrete and in November , the river was diverted into the Arizona tunnels with the Nevada tunnels being saved in case of overflow. Once the Colorado River was diverted, two cofferdams were constructed to prevent flooding in the area where men would be building the dam.

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  • Once completed, excavation for the foundation of Hoover Dam and the installation of columns for the arch structure of the dam began. The first concrete for Hoover Dam was then poured on June 6, in a series of sections so that it would be allowed to dry and cure properly if it had been poured all at once, heating and cooling during day and night would have caused the concrete to cure unevenly and take years to cool completely.


    This process took until May 29, , to complete and it used 3. Hoover Dam was officially dedicated as Boulder Dam on September 30, President Franklin D. Roosevelt was present and most of the work on the dam with the exception of the powerhouse was completed at the time. Today, Hoover Dam is used as a means of flood control on the lower Colorado River. Storage and delivery of the river's waters from Lake Mead is also an integral part of the dam's usage in that it provides reliable water for irrigation in both the U.

    In addition, the Hoover Dam provides low-cost hydroelectric power for Nevada, Arizona, and California. The dam generates more than four billion kilowatt-hours of electricity per year and it is one of the largest hydropower facilities in the U. Revenue generated from power sold at Hoover Dam also pays for all of its operating and maintenance costs. Hoover Dam is also a major tourist destination as it is located only 30 miles 48 km from Las Vegas and is along U.

    Highway Since its construction, tourism was taken into consideration at the dam and all visitor facilities were built with the best materials available at the time.

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    • However, due to security concerns after the September 11, , terrorist attacks, concerns about vehicle traffic on the dam initiated the Hoover Dam Bypass project completed in The Bypass consists of a bridge and no through traffic will be allowed across.