Geology of the Strontia Springs Arch Dam

by V. Q. Hornback, Denver Water Dep, Denver, CO, USA,
R. C. Acker, Denver Water Dep, Denver, CO, USA,
R. A. Paige, (A.M.ASCE), Denver Water Dep, Denver, CO, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Hydropower: Recent Developments


Precambrian metamorphic gneisses comprised the foundation rock at Strontia Springs Damsite. Geologic exploration at the axis selected for the arch dam revealed a large shear zone which introduced major problems of foundation design. The shear zone trended transverse to the canyon, dipped downstream about 60 degree and was apparently foliation controlled. Further exploration and studies indicated that shifting the axis 135 ft (41 m) downstream would nearly eliminate the adverse effects of the shear zone. Excavation for the dam keyway confirmed the excellent quality of the foundation rock at the relocated axis. The only significant foundation problem during construction involved a slope failure during excavation for the intake tower which was successfully stabilized.

Subject Headings: Arch dams | Foundation design | Geology | Foundation construction | Rocks | Rivers and streams | Dam foundations | Transverse shear

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