Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Aeronautics and Aviation

Tall Towers

Photo of a Sunset over a Runway

Tall Towers

Minnesota Structure Height Regulations and Permit Requirements

A permit from MnDOT may be required for the following wind turbines and other tall, non-transmitting structures located outside the zoned territory of a public use airport with airport zoning in place:

  • Those that are more than 500’ Above Ground Level (AGL) anyplace in the state, or
  • when the structure is more than 200’ AGL within three nautical miles of an airport and increasing by 100’ for each additional mile out to six miles and 500’, or·
  • that would increase an instrument approach minimum flight altitude or increase its flight visibility minimums, or
  • that would increase the minimum obstruction clearance altitude of a federal airway, or
  • that penetrate any of the following imaginary surfaces: primary, horizontal, conical, approach, or transitional surfaces.

Note: MnDOT is not authorized to issue a permit for a tower greater than 1000’ with a few exceptions.

A permit from MnDOT is not required for wind turbines and other tall structures that:

  • transmit, and therefore require a permit from the FCC, or
  • are within the zoned territory of any public-use airport that has airport zoning.

Apply for a Permit

To apply for this permit, the sponsor of a project can submit an application by one of the following ways:

  1. Online application
  2. Email: aviationplanning.dot@state.mn.us

Applications should contain the sponsor’s information, including point of contact, preferred method of communication, the latitude and longitude of the structure(s), a map representing the distance between the structure(s) closest to the nearest airport(s) and the airport runway(s), the height above ground level, any plans for marking and lighting, and a copy of the FAA letter of determination.

Note: A FAA letter of determination stating “No Hazard” does not negate or fulfill the need for a state issued permit.