Media Contact: Peterson - Interior 4662
For Immediate Release: September 13, 1962

Secretary of the Interior Stewart L. Udall will dedicate Navajo Dam, first completed major storage unit of the Colorado River Storage Project, in New Mexico on Saturday, September 15, and the new Four Corners marker and highway across the Navajo Indian Reservation on Sunday, September 16. The Four Corners marker designates where boundaries of New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, and Arizona come together, the only such point in the United States.

Secretary Udall will leave Washington Friday for Farmington, New Mexico. Navajo Dam is on the San Juan River, approximately 45 miles from Farmington. The New Mexico Congressional delegation and the Governors of the Four Corners States have been invited to participate.

Navajo Dam has been under construction for four years by a joint venture company consisting of Morrison-Knudsen Company, Inc., Henry J. Kaiser, and the F &S Contracting Company on a contract for $26,195,000. Total expenditure to date on the entire unit has reached $35,000,000. First storage of water was accomplished last July.

The impoundment of water at Navajo was the first at any of the storage units of the Colorado River Storage Project. Plans are to begin storage in the Flaming Gorge Reservoir in November 1962, and in Lake Powell, behind Glen Canyon Dam, early in 1963.

Reclamation Commissioner Floyd E. Dominy, who will also attend the dedication, said Navajo Dam is the second largest earth dam constructed by the Bureau of Reclamation. It stands about 40 stories high, stretches 3,800 feet from wall to wall of the narrow valley through which the San Juan River flows, and contains 26,300,000 cubic yards of compacted earth and rock-fill. Approximately 1,750 man years of on-site labor were expended in its construction with a total payroll of over $12 million and an additional $24 million was expended for services, equipment and supplies which reached to all parts of the country.

When filled, Navajo reservoir will be 35 miles long with a total storage capacity of 1,709,000 acre-feet. About 100,000 acre-feet has been impounded this summer and development of recreational facilities and fishery resources is already under way. The reservoir is in both New Mexico and Colorado, and appropriate agencies of both States are undertaking administration of public-use facilities.

Navajo Dam and reservoir will make possible the direct diversion of water for the Navajo Indian Irrigation Project and also the transmountain upstream diversion required for the San Juan-Chama Project which will benefit lands and municipalities along the Rio Grande River. Both projects were authorized by Congress this year.

The Navajo road dedication will mark successful c6mpletion of long-time efforts by the Navajo Trail Association for construction of an all-weather primary highway across southern Colorado into and through the Indian reservation country of the Four Corners area. The new highway is a link in Secretary Udall's "Golden Circle" plan to connect major parks and monuments in the region by adequate roads. The new highway will be a key link between Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado and the Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona and Zion National Park in Utah.

The new Four Corners marker was designed by the Bureau of Land Management and constructed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs.