Public Lands

Minnesota ATV and ORV Master Plans

State of Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
A person on a quad bike in a forest

In the fall of 2020, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (MnDNR) embarked upon their very first activity-specific statewide master plan—the Minnesota Off-Road Vehicle (ORV) Master Plan—with SE Group as the Prime Consultant.

A close up of an off-road vehicle

The mission statement of MnDNR includes three core tenants: 

  1. conserve and manage natural resources
  2. provide outdoor recreation opportunities
  3. provide for commercial uses of natural resources in a way that creates a sustainable quality of life. 

The goal of this master planning process was to strengthen the capacity of MnDNR to meet each of these organizational goals through their ORV Program in particular. This was completed by identifying ways to enhance ORV opportunities that consider natural resource constraints, land management compatibility, and existing political realities. A key aspect of the project was to conduct a portfolio analysis of all public and private ORV opportunities in Minnesota and to then set a statewide policy that would direct future site and route-specific planning efforts.

SE Group worked closely with MnDNR throughout the process to truly understand the agencies’ unique needs and operational context regarding the ORV program, and as a result became their ‘trusted advisors’ for statewide planning efforts. In 2022, MnDNR and SE Group kicked off a follow up plan for all-terrain vehicles (ATV) and side-by-sides that builds upon the success of the ORV effort. The two planning processes are similar in scope as they both include existing conditions inventory, robust public engagement, spatial analysis, and the creation of a comprehensive long-range planning and implementation document.