Shoreland Management Program

Division of Ecological and Water Resources

Shoreland Management Programs

Program Mission Statement

Make Minnesota's shoreland management options more understandable and responsive to citizens by coordinating DNR shoreland-related programs with other DNR disciplines, agencies, boards, committees, associations and public groups involved in comprehensive shoreland management/watershed efforts.

Shoreland Management Program (Minnesota Rules 6120.2500 - 3900)

This program provides the backbone of statewide standards that local governmental units must adopt into their own land use controls to provide for the orderly development and protection of Minnesota's shorelands (both rivers and lakes). The DNR provides technical assistance to local governmental units in the adoption and administration of their shoreland controls. This involves planning and zoning assistance to local governmental units by DNR Area Hydrologists and Shoreland Management staff.

This document provides good background information about the State's Shoreland Management Program. Shoreland Management: How did it all get started? PDF

See Alternative Shoreland Management Standards for enhanced standards developed by North Central Lakes Pilot Project.

In January 2017, the DNR updated their  Shoreland Model Ordinance. The model is intended to be used by local units of government as a reference when developing new shoreland ordinances or amending existing ordinances.

See Shoreland Management Reference Materials for previous reports, projects, rules, classifications, and guidance documents.

See A Guide for Buying and Managing Shoreland for information about management, lake and river classifications, minimum standards, and evaluating shoreland property.

Lake Improvement District Program (Minnesota Statutes 103B.501 - 103B.581)

Minnesota Statutes allow local citizen initiatives to petition counties to create lake improvement districts in order to address specific concerns within a lake watershed that cannot be addressed under normal governmental actions. Citizens and local governments willing to undertake such initiatives benefit from greater local involvement in the management of their own lakes. DNR provides oversight and assistance.


Kathleen Metzker, Land Use Hydrologist, 651-259-5694


Shoreland Stewardship: Tips for Landowners

Other Useful Links


Dan Petrik, Land Use Specialist, 651-259-5697