Utility permits

Helicopter over work area

Policy | Apply for permit | DT1553 | Utility permit contacts | Subscribe for updates | Utility relocation contacts| WI law

Utility permits are required to construct, operate or maintain a utility facility on state trunk highway (STH) right of way. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Gas/oil
  • Electric
  • Telecommunications, including CATV
  • Cellular
  • Fiber optics
  • Water, including permanent irrigation lines
  • Storm sewers not related to highway drainage
  • Sanitary sewers, including permanent animal waste pipes
  • Private facilities (non-public use/ownership)

WisDOT has a comprehensive Utility Accommodation Policy (UAP) that regulates the construction, operation and maintenance of utility facilities on all highways under WisDOT's jurisdiction. The UAP details the requirements necessary to obtain a permit. Once approved, the permit remains in effect as long as the facility is operated and maintained according to permit conditions and the UAP.

Utility Accommodation Policy

The UAP is part of the Highway Maintenance Manual (HMM) and its format resembles other WisDOT documents such as the Facilities Development Manual and Construction Materials Manual. This should allow for easier web searches involving all WisDOT manuals.

The HMM format places the UAP under Chapter 9, Right of Way Use & Permits, Section 15, Utility Accommodation. A complete list and links to all of the procedures is available at:

Revisions to individual procedures are also listed at this site.

Apply for a utility permit

Fill out form DT1553 and submit it along with the appropriate plans, drawings or other details to the transportation region office responsible for the county where the utility project will be located. For faster permit application processing, submit all materials electronically via email, or for larger files, a file transfer protocol (FTP) site. If you do not have access to an FTP site, WisDOT can provide one. Submit the permit form as a Word document with an electronic (typed) signature instead of scanning it. Supporting materials should be in PDF format. You may also submit the application and supporting materials by regular mail. If you do this, the application must be filled out in ink.

Form DT1553

Form DT1553, Application/permit to construct, operate and maintain utility facilities on highway right-of-way, is available by clicking on either link below. If you need instructions on how to fill out the form, choose DT1553i. If you need a Word 97-2003 version of the form, contact the region office.


Direct questions regarding specific utility permit issues or requests to the transportation region office.

For questions on WisDOT's Utility Accommodation Policy and forms, contact:

Bob Fasick
Wisconsin DOT
Bureau of Highway Maintenance
4822 Madison Yards Way, 5th Floor South
Madison, WI 53705
(608) 266-3438

Subscribe to Utility Accommodation Policy email list

Sign up to receive email notifications when the Utility Accommodation Policy or form DT1553 is updated along with information regarding other related documents.



Utility relocations on highway projects

Direct questions regarding the relocation of utility facilities associated with highway improvement projects to one of the utility coordinators in the transportation region office responsible for the project. These projects may or may not require a WisDOT utility permit.

Direct questions on WisDOT's utility coordination guide to:

Wisconsin DOT
Bureau of Technical Services
P.O. Box 7916 - Room 451
Madison, WI 53707-7916

Connie Bruns
(608) 516-6357

Abby Schmidt
(608) 286-0774

Associated Wisconsin law

Visit the links below for Wisconsin law associated with utilities and permitting on state right of way.