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Thread: Over the River

  1. #1
    Administrator Sandra's Avatar
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    Default Over the River

    I saw in the paper today that the Over the River project has been postponed, and I also see where some anti-project group has started and is being lauded.

    WELL - they're NOT being lauded by ME!

    People need to get a freaking LIFE and stop being busybodies! Let Cristo complete his project - he's not harming anyone or anything, and what little "harm" is done (drilling, etc) will heal over time - it's not like he's fracking or anything. Any affect that his project has would not be so devastating that the earth can't recover.

    I think it's pretty bad when we've gotten to the point where we look down our noses at others to the point where we, ourselves, forgot how to smile or let our hair down.

    I was one of those myself - I was very much against Cristo's project at one time and was somewhat vocal about that, but then I realized there's an element of humanity here to be considered. So he wants to drape fabric over the Arkansas river. Why should that bother us so much? The wildlife won't mind it. And even if they did, WE are the humans, not them. In the scheme of things, they are under us - and I don't see how that project really would harm them.

    We live in a world where there is illegal dumping of trash and toxic waste in rivers, streams, lakes and oceans. There are nasty oil spills cleaned up with chemicals that are causing marine life to become very ill with tumors and mutations. There is fracking that is said to put dangerous chemicals into the ground. Back in the 1970's in the areas between Colorado Springs and Denver deep holes were dug into the earth (similar to drilling for a well or for oil) and toxic waste was dumped in to them. Suddenly there was a series of earthquakes in Denver - so they stopped the drilling and dumping, removed the waste, and the earthquakes stopped.

    We're doing all this big, huge crap to the earth yet are complaining because someone wants to drape fabric over the Arkansas river and leave it for a few months? WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE?! There is NO WAY his project would be so environmentally damaging that the environment won't recover. It's no worse than if some developer came in and started building houses.

    I think what it really boils down to is that people can't enjoy a vision anymore. We've lost our ability to dream and enjoy the dreams of others. We have no appreciation for anything.

    The biggest complaint I see on the net is "it isn't art". Yes it is! Art is in the eye of the beholder. Every artist has their own idea of what constitutes art and the statement their art makes. Some like it, others don't. That's the beauty of it. And the big thing is to have fun while doing it - which they do - so who are we to spoil it?

    I hope Cristo completes his project. We only live once, and the lawsuits against his project are frivolous and busybodied. I, for one, want to see the project happen and I want to visit it upon its completion. I wouldn't mind watching it as it progresses towards completion, either. And think of the tourism it could bring in - new people discovering the area - new money flowing in - I see some good possibilities here!
    Opinions expressed by me are mine only and are not in any way, shape, or form representative of the Pueblo Chieftain or Pueblo Community Forums.

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    Sandra, I'm an artist, and pretty broad minded about it . . However, I dunno where the art starts and technology leaves off with something like this thing . . Basically, I see it pretty much like a bedsheet over an irrigation ditch . . as far as effect goes. And while I haven't read much about it and how it'll be done, I do know they're going to have to have cables bolted in place on the canyon walls to just hold it in place . . requiring construction crews on and above the roadway . .

    So once it's got it's cables and is hanging in place, you have a giant "SAIL" hanging there, waiting for God to drop the other shoe . . And if you've ever been in the canyon when one of those high winds that blow down through there comes along, you have to know, that "SAIL" ain't gonna be there long . . now where it would go, what it would tear up, and what kind of roadblock would it make apparently hasn't been considered by those who would like to see it . . or at least I haven't seen or heard of those considerations . .

    Problem with the canyon itself being more of a destination than it already is, would be the fact that it's a highway link to the Upper Arkansas Communities . . and if you have to use Highway 50 to get to the many communities between Pueblo and Gunnison, those tourists become more than an impediment, they can be literally, a hazard . . . simply because there's no place for many more people to park and look . . driving and being a Lookie Loo in the canyon really ain't safe, especially in the areas that are being planned to be covered. The road and canyon is probably the narrowest at those points so roadside traffic is gonna be deadly . .
    "A man with a firearm is a citizen... a man without one is a subject"

  3. #3
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    I think, in this case, the art is more in the man and his dream - a tribute to his beloved wife who enjoyed doing this - a kind of monument to her - than in the product itself. Maybe his way of saying goodbye - to want to make her last wish come true. He loved her so much - and when she died I think his world was forever changed - I think he misses her terribly and this would be a good way for him to have closure before his own time comes. I can't think of anything more beautiful.

    Love is a masterpiece.
    Opinions expressed by me are mine only and are not in any way, shape, or form representative of the Pueblo Chieftain or Pueblo Community Forums.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sandra View Post
    Love is a masterpiece.
    I'd go along with that, to a point . . but to involve so many others in this, whether they want to be or not, might be a bit egocentric, in the least . .
    "A man with a firearm is a citizen... a man without one is a subject"

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    About twelve years ago or more, A representative of Mr.Cristo walked into my office with an elaborate set of drawings and explained to me what they were proposing to do. Of course, because traffic control is our business, he said he wanted my opinion on how this would impact traffic. He said he had just come to town and was meeting with some representatives of government etc to see about getting permission to this art. I was quite impressed, but I remember being a bit skeptical about why this was so important for him to do. he showed me pictures of somewhere else they had done this and it was something to see. I don't remember where it was. He asked me to attend, a meeting with him in Salida a few days later which I did. He wanted to meet with the CDOT, the Bureau of Reclamation and the Forest Service. I did attend and he received everyone's preliminary feedback. Much of it was skeptical. I never heard from him again. I just figured he was going to give up the idea. Anyway, years past and i read accounts of him still trying to get it approved. The process they use is to drape the fabric is quite interesting. Somehow they shoot special lugs into the rock on each side of the river. Then they shoot the fabric and tie it to the lugs. At least, that is the way I remember him describing it. I told him that I wanted to be there when they did it. But this idea of his is many years old and that is how long he has been working on it. His wife was alive when this idea started. I agree with Sandra to let him do it. The whole concept is unique and I believe it will be quite beautiful. The drawings he brought depicting the art was quite impressive. At least, he has come to everyone over a long period of time trying to explain why this might be something everyone can enjoy.He didn't come in and try to jam it down everyone's throat. He has been respectful and willing to amiable about the whole thing. I have felt sorry for him because of the negativeness and the permit process he has had to endure. If nothing else he is a man of persistence and courage for what he believes will be a unique piece of art. I say let him do this! It is my bet, most everyone is going to be very surprised on just how very special this is going to look.

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    My position on it is from my own experience, traveling the canyon and my impressions gained from doing that frequently for many years . . during the summer (Tourist season) Highway 50 is just about pressed to it's capable max on the weekends. There is little to no off road parking and anything out of the ordinary creates a serious and often dangerous chokepoint. Add to that, the number of frightened Flatlanders who drive 10 miles an hour under the speed limit because they have never been in a narrow canyon with a cliff on one side and the river on the other, and the Lookie Loos who aren't frightened but need to go slow so they won't miss anything and you've already got a mixture of slow impediments to the everyday traffic of the Highway. Two or three Dall Sheep across the river can cause a major stoppage for up to a half hour . .

    Add in just one impatient driver and you've got the makings of one hellova wreck . . And having driven that canyon a jillion times, I can tell you, on weekends, there's a lot more than just one impatient driver . . It's already a D@mned Zoo . . Currently, unless I have to go to Salida or Gunnison, I go the long way and avoid Highway 50 in the canyon altogether . . And usually get there quicker . . and a lot safer . .
    "A man with a firearm is a citizen... a man without one is a subject"

  7. #7
    Administrator Sandra's Avatar
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    Add in just one impatient driver and you've got the makings of one hellova wreck . .
    That's true - although remember the construction of the highway through Glenwood Springs - I think it was - somewhere between the Western slope and Denver? How many years did that take - and there were traffic backed up for miles for hours at a time as crews completed their work. I've been caught up in that a few times - the people would usually be pretty good natured and would get out of their cars and talk to each other and have picnics - it was actually kind of fun if you weren't in a big hurry.
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    Kinda different . . The section between Hanging Lakes and Dotsero was particularily blocked up for sometimes as long as a half hour . . But . . when a road is blocked because of construction or a slide, that's different than doing 25 mph and dodging pedestrians getting out of their cars on a busy highway . . which is the commodity lifeblood for everybody and everything West of Canon City to about Blue Mesa . . Matter of fact, I traveled that road almost every weekend to and from G. Junction for about 3 years and then I smarted up and found that I could usually get to Pueblo/G.Junction just about as quick (sometimes quicker) by using I-70, I-270 and I-25 . . and a heck of a lot less stressed!

    Point is . . I can understand why there's a lot of pushback on the "Art Project" and it's all based on conventional wisdom . .
    "A man with a firearm is a citizen... a man without one is a subject"

  9. #9
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    Has traffic been that bad on his other projects?
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    I know he knew traffic would be impacted. This is why they started this process so many years ago.Obviously he had dealt with these issues in other locations and had worked out compromises. Traffic issues were discussed in some detail at the first meeting in Salida. I also told him of my concerns of rear end accidents and pedestrian mishaps. They were willing to work with everyone to come of with solutions that would help the situation through the canyon. But again, I haven' t been involved since early on in any of the discussions with CDOT and others.

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