NEW Permit Application - Engagement

Larimer County approves Thornton's 1041 permit application for a water pipeline

May 8, 2024

Brett Henry, Interim City Manager for the City of Thornton, issued the following statement regarding Larimer County’s approval of the city’s 1041 permit application for a water pipeline:

“We are immensely pleased that Larimer County has approved our 1041 permit application, representing a pivotal achievement in the Thornton Water Project. This approval enables us to advance with the construction of a crucial water pipeline that will guarantee a sustainable and reliable water supply for our community. Importantly, it reaffirms our commitment to collaborative endeavors aimed at enhancing and safeguarding the Poudre River alongside partners like Poudre Flows and others.

Throughout this process, we have engaged in open and constructive dialogues with the local community, demonstrating our commitment to transparency and mutual respect. Our approach has always been to not just meet but exceed regulatory and community outreach requirements, ensuring that our plans align with the broader goals of Larimer County and serve as a beacon for how communities can unite over significant projects, including water projects.

As Thornton moves forward, we remain dedicated to minimizing construction impacts and maximizing the ecological and conservation-related benefits of this project. We are not merely users of the Poudre River; we are deeply invested in its health and resilience. Our future, much like Larimer’s, is inextricably linked to the well-being of these critical water resources.”

NEW Permit Application – Engagement

On November 20, 2023, with an appreciation to the many Larimer County landowners and community stakeholders who provided valuable input over the last year, the city of Thornton formally submitted a new application asking Larimer County to approve a permit to build a buried water pipeline for transporting water to Thornton. The Thornton Water Project will deliver an average of 14,000-acre feet of high-quality water Thornton owns in the Water Supply and Storage Company System (WSSC) to its residents. This project is critical to ensure water supply reliability and drought resiliency, to provide drinking water that is protective of public health, safety and welfare, to support the availability of housing and to meet municipal water demands in the city through 2065.

After one-on-one meetings with many local landowners and community stakeholders, two public informational meetings, and gathering additional input through surveys, Thornton staff listened and learned about concerns regarding impacts that the construction of a pipeline might create in Larimer County. This extensive engagement resulted in several significant changes to the pipeline alignment previously proposed in 2018 which Larimer County denied.

Specifically, Thornton staff participated in two open houses in Larimer County, and hired a third-party consultant to conduct a survey which was sent to the over 400 property owners within the project area. Thornton also heard concerns about perceived impacts the Thornton Water Project might have on the Poudre River. An educational component was added to the open houses and all outreach to inform attendees that the project creates no new impacts to flows on the Poudre River. The water Thornton owns is stored in reservoirs and has come out of the Poudre River in the same location and same amount since the 1890’s.

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Map of preferred alignment

Map of preferred alignment


For the current status, go to the Larimer County page.

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