I love the sketches to Christo's project and the projects itself of course. To realize the following project the team around Christo has been through an incredible battle of 20 years to finally get approval in November last year. The project Over The River plans for 5.9 miles of silvery, luminous fabric panels to be suspended high above the Arkansas River along a 42-mile stretch of the river between Salida and Cañon City in south-central Colorado.
Over the River has been on the drawing boards for 20 years now, with over $7 million of Christo’s money invested into it with environmental studies, mock-ups, surveys from the air and wind tests. The project was finally approved by the federal bureau of land management which ows 98% of the river front.
Supporters and opponents gathered at the final public hearings earlier this month fighting for officials to consider their input on the temporary permit. Opponents fear that the $50 million project, entirely paid for by the artist, will disrupt the pristine landscape and cause dangerous traffic within the winding canyon.
Christo’s team has promised ambulances and helicopters on standby incase of an emergency during the exhibition, along with more than 20 Colorado State Troopers enforcing a no-stopping rule.
“We are fearful of impeding our way of life on a day-to-day basis for years to come. We are fearful for the wildlife and sanctuary that we enjoy,” Opponent Thomas Kainz of Howard said. “Most importantly, fearful that we are faced with yet another case where someone with deep pockets and political connections gets their way like some spoiled child. Mr. Christo may see this as some wild juxtaposition between the line of fabric in the surrounding nature over the roaring river, but to me, I see it as a bastardization of the beautifully pristine, quiet countryside that I and many, many others choose to live in.”
If the proposal is approved, construction will begin this Summer and Christo will exhibit Over the River for two consecutive weeks in August, 2014, at the earliest.