The Panama Canal is approximately 40 miles long from shore to shore. Its length from the deep water in the Atlantic Ocean to the deep water in the Pacific Ocean is approximately 50 miles. The canal shortened the trip from the Atlantic to the Pacific by 8,000 nautical miles.
The canal uses a series of locks that are 1,000 feet long, 110 feet wide and 40 feet deep. In 2007, work began to expand and update the locks. The canal was built in 1914 by the United States, which controlled the rights to the canal from its completion until 1999.