LRP - Licenses

LRP - Regulations

LRP - Permits

Recreation - Statewide

Recreation - Trapping

Recreation - Fishing

Recreation - Hunting

Env. Protection - Management

Env. Protection - Emergency

Env. Protection - Resources

To sign up for updates or to access your subscriber preferences, please enter your contact information below.



 
Completed plans
establishing goals and objectives for DNR properties.
Plan reports
monitoring goals and objectives.
Feasibility studies
studying new properties.
Public lands
parks, forests, wildlife, fisheries, natural areas, trails, wild rivers and flowages.
Contact information
For information on Master Planning, contact:
Diane Brusoe
Bureau of Facilities & Lands
608-267-7469

Property Master PlansFeasibility studies

The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) periodically proposes to establish new properties (e.g., State Parks, Forests, or Wildlife, Fishery and Natural Areas) to meet growing conservation and recreation needs. Before the Department can establish a new property or significantly expand an existing one, it must prepare a study on the area's characteristics and features to determine if the intended conservation and recreation goals can be met. Also integral to the study is an assessment of public support. This "Feasibility Study" must be approved by the Natural Resources Board and Governor before DNR can offer to purchase land within a proposed property. What follows are some answers to frequently asked questions about Feasibility Studies.

What is a feasibility study?

A Feasibility Study is used to determine whether it is practicable for the Department to establish, acquire, develop, and manage new property such as a State Park, Wildlife Area, Forest, or Natural Area. The feasibility study not only takes into account the area's physical and biological environment and its capabilities, but also the views of the public and landowners, and the availability of funding and staffing to successfully accomplish the project's purpose. Furthermore, a feasibility study presents a proposed boundary, general land management strategies, and alternatives.

The feasibility study also must meet the requirements of the Wisconsin Environmental Policy Act (WEPA) and its implementing codes. [Certain DNR actions require an Environmental Analysis or a complete Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).] Before the Department can implement the proposed project, it is also required to complete an Environmental Analysis or Environmental Impact Statement under NR 150 of Wisconsin's Administrative Code.

How is a feasibility study initiated?

Most proposed projects are discussed and shaped informally for years before a formal feasibility study is started. Often Department staff, officials from local units of government, members of non-profit conservation and recreation groups, or other citizens will evaluate a variety of land protection options based on local conservation and recreation demands and opportunities. Before the Department can initiate formal work on a feasibility study, it must gain approval from the Natural Resources Board.

How is the public involved?

Public input in the feasibility study process is integral to a successful proposal. The amount and nature of public involvement varies based on the complexity, size, and type of project that is proposed. A formal hearing is held to gather input on a proposed land protection project; however in most instances an informal "open house" meeting is organized to allow the public the opportunity to better understand a proposed project and provide their perspectives and input. Without local public support for a potential State Park, Forest, or Wildlife, Fishery or Natural Area, there is little chance that the project will succeed.

How are feasibility studies approved?

When the feasibility study is completed it is presented to the Natural Resources Board for their consideration at one of their monthly meetings. The public is invited to attend these meetings and can provide perspective on whether the Board should approve the proposed project. If approved by the NRB, it is forwarded to the Governor's Office for approval. Only once the Board and the Governor have approved the feasibility study can the Department begin offering to purchase lands within the boundary.

Last revised: Tuesday March 10 2015