LGA was contracted in 2017 to design new security checkpoint facilities that act as a portal and visitor entry experience to the Hoover Dam. At the same time, providing a better working environment for the security guards who protect the Dam 24 hours a day was imperative. The facilities and improvements include large shade canopies, a permanent security guard station and employee facility complete with new restrooms, and multiple travel lanes designed to increase visitor flow and reduce wait times.
The design was inspired by the historical features located at the Hoover Dam, which included the Dam, Powerhouse, Valve House, and most significantly, the switchyard and electrical transmission features.
After September 11, 2001, Reclamation was forced to provide additional security screening for cars and buses entering the Dam. To date, the security team has been operating out of temporary facilities until Reclamation received funding for permanent facilities. The new facilities will allow Reclamation to modernize the visitor experience while meeting the critical Hoover Dam security checkpoint needs.
The Bureau of Reclamation has been offering tours of Hoover Dam since its inception. Today, over 1.2 million vehicles travel to Hoover Dam every year and at peak times up to 150 buses per day cross the Hoover Dam. This results in approximately 6 million visitors annually, significantly more than was ever anticipated when the Dam was constructed. On any given day, there is an estimated average of 15,000 visitors and up to 25,000 visitors on peak days. The $8.7 million project is currently under construction and will be complete in 2021.