San Vicente Dam Raise

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San Vicente Dam Raise

Construction of the San Vicente Dam Raise – the nation’s tallest dam-raise project – rapidly progressed during the year.  The project, a key component of the Emergency Storage Project and the Water Authority’s overall Capital Improvement Program, will raise the city of San Diego’s San Vicente Dam by 117 feet. It will create 52,100 acre-feet of additional emergency storage capacity and another 100,000 acre-feet of carryover storage – water stored in wet years for use during future dry years.

The main phase of construction – the placement of roller-compacted concrete to raise the dam – got under way in September. In this method of construction, concrete is placed layer by layer in one-foot increments called “lifts.” 

By June, concrete placement on the main dam had reached 270 feet – 50 feet above the dam’s original height and approximately 80 percent of the dam’s eventual new height of 337 feet. Crews also completed about half of a new saddle dam – an auxiliary dam that fills in a low point in the hills that will help contain the expanded reservoir’s new, higher water level.


See the Construction
for Yourself

Click to see a time-lapse view of crews placing roller-compacted concrete on the San Vicente Dam during fiscal year 2012.