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Appeals Board Upholds Permit For Christo Project

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Artist Christo speaks at a press conference unveiling two original preparatory collages for 'Over The River' donated to the National Galley of Art's permanent collection by French environment artist Christo at the National Gallery of Art on November 8, 2011 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Riccardo S. Savi/Getty Images)

Artist Christo speaks at a press conference unveiling two original preparatory collages for ‘Over The River’ donated to the National Galley of Art’s permanent collection by French environment artist Christo at the National Gallery of Art on November 8, 2011 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Riccardo S. Savi/Getty Images)

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DENVER (AP) — An appeals board is upholding the Bureau of Land Management’s decision to grant the artist Christo a permit for his Over the River project, which involves temporarily suspending huge fabric panels over parts of the Arkansas River in Colorado.

Denver-based environmental consultant Rocky Smith, who filed the appeal along with others, said the ruling Friday by the Interior Board of Land Appeals wasn’t unexpected.

Opponents of Over the River are still challenging the project in lawsuits pending in state and federal courts.

Christo said in a written statement that he was very happy with the appeals board decision and was hopeful it would enable the courts to move forward so Over the River can be realized.

Opponents contend the project poses environmental, safety, traffic and economic risks along the river.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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