Hoover Dam Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about the Dam

Where is Hoover Dam located?Photo of Hoover Dam at night. Click photo for larger view.

In Black Canyon across the Colorado River between Arizona and Nevada, about thirty miles east of Las Vegas, Nevada, and a couple of miles from Boulder City, Nevada.

How high is Hoover Dam?

It is slightly over 725 feet from foundation bedrock to the road on the top. The towers and decor on the parapet soar forty feet above the crest.

How much does the Dam weigh?

More than 6,600,000 tons. (A ton is 2,000 pounds)

What type of dam is Hoover Dam?

Made from concrete, an arch-gravity type, in which the water load is borne by both gravity and horizontal arch action.

What is the water pressure at the base of the dam?

Approximately 45,000 pounds per square foot.

How much concrete did the dam require?

3.25 million cubic yards of concrete! There are more than 4,300,000 yards of concrete within the dam, the power building and related works. This much concrete could construct a monument 100 feet square and 2-1/2 miles tall; would be higher than the Empire State Building; or would provide a standard two lane highway sixteen feet wide, from San Francisco all the way to New York on the East Coast.

Initial concrete used in construction of the dam was set on June 6, 1933, and the final portion on May 29, 1935. About 160,000 cubic yards were added to the dam per month. At the peak, placements were more than 10,000 cubic yards a day, including concrete placed in the intake towers and power plant), and just over 275,000 cubic yards in a single month.

How much cement was required?

In total, more than 5,000,000 barrels. The daily useage during construction of the dam was from 7,500 to over 10,000 barrels. Reclamation had used about 6,000,000 barrels in its twenty-seven years of construction activity before June 30, 1932