What is the height of the Hoover Dam?

Tourist Attractions

By Charlotte Williams

The Iconic Hoover Dam

The Hoover Dam is an iconic engineering marvel located on the border between Arizona and Nevada in the United States. It was constructed between 1931 and 1936, during the Great Depression, and was named after President Herbert Hoover. The dam was built on the Colorado River, primarily to control flooding and generate hydroelectric power. Today, it is a popular tourist attraction, visited by millions of people each year.

Facts and Figures: Hoover Dam’s Construction

The construction of the Hoover Dam was a massive undertaking. Over 21,000 workers were employed for the project, which cost $49 million to build at the time. The dam is made of concrete, which was poured continuously for two years. It spans over 1,200 feet in length and is 726.4 feet high. The dam’s base is 660 feet thick, and it contains enough concrete to build a two-lane highway from San Francisco to New York City. Hoover Dam’s power plant has the capacity to generate 2,080 megawatts of electricity and provides power to millions of people in the Southwest United States. The construction of the Hoover Dam was a significant accomplishment in the history of engineering and remains one of the most impressive structures in the world.

The Height of Hoover Dam: A Matter of Debate

The height of the Hoover Dam has been a matter of debate over the years. Some people argue that the height of the dam should be measured from its base to the top of the parapet walls, while others say that it should be measured from the base to the top of the power plant intake towers. There is no consensus on the correct way to measure the dam’s height, and this has led to some confusion over the years.

Measuring Hoover Dam’s Height: The Criteria

To measure the height of the Hoover Dam accurately, several criteria are considered. These include the height of the dam’s crest above sea level, the height of the dam’s base above sea level, and the height of the dam’s intake towers above sea level. The measurement of the dam’s height can also vary depending on whether the river is at its normal or maximum flow rate.

Official Height of Hoover Dam: 726.4 feet

The official height of the Hoover Dam is 726.4 feet, measured from its foundation to the top of the parapet walls. This measurement was established by the Bureau of Reclamation, which is responsible for managing and maintaining the dam. The Bureau of Reclamation’s measurement is based on the height of the dam’s crest above sea level.

How was Hoover Dam Height Calculated?

To calculate the height of the Hoover Dam, engineers used a combination of surveying and laser technology. The measuring process took several months and involved carefully measuring the height of various parts of the dam, including the crest and the intake towers. The data collected was then used to calculate the dam’s official height.

The Impact of Hoover Dam’s Height on the Colorado River

The height of the Hoover Dam has a significant impact on the Colorado River and the surrounding ecosystem. The dam’s height allows it to hold back large amounts of water, which is used for irrigation, drinking water, and hydroelectric power. However, the dam’s height also affects the flow of the river, which can impact fish and wildlife habitats downstream. The Bureau of Reclamation works to balance the needs of the surrounding ecosystem with the needs of the local communities.

Comparing Hoover Dam’s Height to Other Dams

Hoover Dam’s height is impressive, but it is not the tallest dam in the world. The Jinping-I Dam in China is currently the tallest dam, standing at 1,002 feet tall. However, the Hoover Dam remains one of the most iconic and significant dams in the world, due to its historical significance and impact on the surrounding area.

Maintaining Hoover Dam’s Height: A Challenge

Maintaining the height of the Hoover Dam is a significant challenge. The dam is subject to erosion, cracking, and other forms of wear and tear, which can affect its structural integrity. The Bureau of Reclamation is responsible for ensuring that the dam remains safe and functional, and it has implemented several maintenance and repair projects over the years to address these issues.

Hoover Dam: A Tourist Attraction for Height Seekers

The Hoover Dam is a popular tourist attraction, especially for those interested in its impressive height. Visitors can take a tour of the dam and learn about its history and construction. They can also stand on the top of the dam and take in the breathtaking views of the surrounding area.

Conclusion: Hoover Dam’s Height in History

The height of the Hoover Dam is a testament to the ingenuity and skill of the engineers who built it. It remains one of the most iconic structures in the world and continues to provide power and water to millions of people in the Southwest United States. Its impact on the environment and the local community cannot be overstated, and its height will continue to be a source of wonder and amazement for generations to come.

References: Sources for Hoover Dam’s Height Information

  • Bureau of Reclamation. "Hoover Dam." https://www.usbr.gov/lc/hooverdam/
  • National Park Service. "Hoover Dam."
  • Smithsonian Magazine. "The Engineering Marvel That Saved the West." https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/engineering-marvel-saved-west-180963414/
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Charlotte Williams

Charlotte Williams, a cosmopolitan writer based in Wilmington, is the ultimate local expert for family travel at TravelAsker. Drawing on her extensive global experiences, from Paris to Bali, her articles are a treasure trove of invaluable information. With an intimate knowledge of Wilmington’s attractions, resorts, hotels, activities, and restaurants, she adds a maternal touch to her work, guiding readers towards creating cherished family memories in Delaware and beyond.

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