The Fremont County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously this morning to approve the Temporary Use Permit for Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s Over The River. This is a significant step in the permitting process, and Christo is very pleased to have successfully reached this important milestone.
„The Fremont County permit is essential to realizing this temporary work of art that Jeanne-Claude and I first envisioned nearly 20 years ago,“ said Christo. „I am very pleased that the Commissioners have voted to approve this public work of art for Fremont County, and I want to thank them for their hard work and efforts in evaluating our application. I am glad to be moving forward with our plans to complete Over The River.“
The Board of Commissioners and County staff solicited extensive public comment when reviewing Christo’s permit application. They also considered the Bureau of Land Management’s extensive analysis of the project, as well as the nearly 200 mitigation measures addressing community and environmental concerns, as described in the Final Environmental Impact Statement. Christo is very pleased that, after carefully evaluating all aspects of the project, the Commissioners reached the same conclusion as other regulatory agencies in supporting the realization of Over The River.
Over The River will have significant benefits for Fremont County and all of Colorado, both culturally and economically. This once-in-a-lifetime experience will not only boost tourism and provide worldwide exposure for the area, but it is also expected to generate $583,000 in additional sales tax revenues within Fremont and Chaffee Counties alone.
As part of Fremont County’s Temporary Use Permit, Christo has agreed to more than 30 specific conditions. For example, Christo has committed to fund a wide variety of costs that the County may incur as a result of Over The River, including reimbursements for staff time and funds to mitigate project-related road impacts. Through the sale of his original works of art, Christo and Jeanne-Claude always funded their projects without any public subsidies, grants, commercial advertising or taxpayer support.
Christo’s next step is to submit an application to Chaffee County for a Temporary Special Events Permit, which is expected to happen within the next few weeks. Assuming the remaining permits are successfully secured, Over The River installation will begin in early 2013 with exhibition planned for August 2015.