How to apply for a PRWD permit

  1. Download and complete a permit application.  For your convenience our permit applications have been consolidated into one form. You must simply specify what type of permit you are applying for when completing the application.
  2. Create a site plan map. An acceptable site plan must include: identification of all existing features (with dimensions) including buildings, dock access, boathouses, patios, sandblankets, rip-rap, trees, vegetation, steps, paths, etc.  Applicants must also identify all new features with dimensions, and mark the location and dimensions of all site erosion control measures (silt fence, rock access, temporary seeding, etc).


  3. Supply any additional required information.  Permit applications for certain projects may require a stormwater management plan or a grading and erosion control plan for consideration.
    1. Stormwater Management Plan
    2. Erosion and Sediment Control Plan

If a Stormwater Management Permit is required for your project, please review the technical memo below which outlines "best practices" for the design of stormwater management systems and provides the most current stormwater design guidelines.

Best Practices for the Design of Stormwater Management Systems


***Applications must be signed by the property owner or governmental unit.


Permit Fees

Permit application must be accompanied application and field inspection fees. If the project involves more than one action, only one field inspection fee will be charged for the project. The higher inspection fee will apply. Field inspection/plan review fees includes initial site and final inspection site visits.

Permit Application and Inspection Fee Schedule

Please note that at this time PRWD is unable to accept on-line payment for permit applications.  You will need to mail a check or money order to our office or visit us in person to submit payment in order for your application to be considered.


Permit Application Checklist

  • Permit Application, signed by property owner (or government unit)
  • Site Plans
  • Additional supporting documents and plans (if required or applicable)
    • Stormwater Management Plan
    • Erosion and Sediment Control Plan
    • Surveys
    • Copy of City or County Variance
    • Copy of permits from other agencies
  • Check or Money Order

Please Contact Us if you are unsure about any requirements for your project.


Permit Information

The Pelican River Watershed District has divided in six different type of permits.  Many projects will meet more that one of criteria below, however only one application is needed per project (per parcel)

Shore Impact Zone (SIZ) Permits are required for land alterations within the area one half the distance of the required building setback from the ordinary high water level.  Setback distances vary depending on the type of waterbody and are set the Minnesota DNR.  Activities requiring permit approval may include rip-rap/beach sand blanket installation or repair, vegetation removal, alteration of land or ice ridges, or any change in impervious surface. 

Impervious Surface Permits are required for the alteration to land cover that hinders the infiltration of water through the soil.   This includes, but not limited to gravel, rock, asphalt, concrete and non-pervious paver systems.  Specific coverage requirements can be found in the about link.

Bluff and Steep Slope Permits are required for activities involving bluff and steep slopes with the Shoreline Impact Zone and the Shoreland District (1000ft setback from lake 300ft setback from river/stream). This includes vegetation removal, retaining walls, and land cover disturbance.

Subdivisions, Plats, or Planned Unit Developments (PUD) 

Highways, Road, Parking Lots, and Public Water Accesses

Bridges, Culverts, De-watering, and Inlets to Waters of the State

Permit Requirements and Condition

Permits will be granted for actions which meet all of the following conditions:

  • Actions will not result in increases in stormwater discharge rates to adjoining properties or to waters of the state for the 5-year, 25-year, and 100-year- 24-hour rainfall events.
  • All actions must utilize standards procedures for controlling runoff rates, nutrients, and sediments
  • Stormwater management plan for alterations of impervious surface, subdivisions, plats, planned unit developments, highway, streets, roads, parking lots, public water access, stormwater infrastructure, inlets to waters of the state, bridges, culverts.
  • Actions involving ice ridges are allowed only for purposes of repairing existing shoreline damage; no ice ridge modifications which result in an increase of runoff to a lake or natural vegetation disturbance are allowed, except that a 4 foot wide walkway may be constructed upon an ice ridge.
  • Actions involving the stabilization of shorelines or stream banks (including rip-rap), or installation of beach sand blankets must use non-polluting fill. 
  • Retaining walls in the shore impact zone are allowed only for the purposes of correcting existing slope instability or erosion;  the base of such walls must be above the highest known water level.

Complete applications must be submitted to the District office for review and approval.  Applicants must present all of the items below prior to consideration by the District.

  • All necessary maps, plans, specifications, and calculations in duplicate.  Additional information may be required by the District after initial review.
  • Permit application and field inspection fees as set by the Board of Managers.  Application must be signed by the property owner or governmental unit.
  • Street location/vicinity map
  • A cash performance surety may also be required.

Complete applications are usually reviewed within 14 days, however the District reserves the right to allow 60 days for approval from receipt of completed application.  Once all plans and other permit requirements are met, the Board of Managers or their Designee will approve your permit.  You can pick up the signed permit at the District office or we can mail it to you by request. PRWD Staff will inform you within ten (10) days written notice of any deficiencies in your application and ask you to make necessary changes.

For more information on Detroit Lakes Flood Plain locations, click here.

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