Application Requirements for Grading Permits

The University of Minnesota’s building standards for Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP), and Erosion & Sediment Control Plan details and requirements can be found in the Building Standards.

The University's Grading Permit is to be applied for by the General Contractor and in doing so the General Contractor accepts responsibility for all subcontractor compliance with the project's Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan / Erosion & Sediment Control Plan.

Instructions and Information

Expand all

Which Projects Need a Grading Permit?

In general a Grading Permit is required

  • When construction requires an MPCA Construction Permit
  • When there are soil disturbances of 3,000 square feet or more (University standard 31 25 2.1)
  • When project requires a DNR Public Waters Work Permit (University standard 31 20 1.1.B.1)
  • When project requires a ACE 404 Permit (University standard 31 20 1.1.C.1)
  • Based on the above points, may be needed in addition to building, demo, plumbing, septic or utility permits

What Information Is Required for My Grading Permit?

Grading Permit Valuation

The applicant for a permit must provide an estimated permit value at time of application. Permit valuations must include the total value of all grading work, including materials and labor, for which the permit is being issued, such as site grading and temporary BMPs. 

Scope of Work

Please submit a project scope of grading work to include the following:

  1. Detailed description of what work is being done (pertaining to this application) on this project
  2. Site address or other applicable information that further describes the location

Which Documents Are Required to Apply for a Grading Permit?

A copy of the project's Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) or Erosion & Sediment Control Plan (ESCP) and a UMN reviewed and signed Appendix K (with Section D filled out) are required to be uploaded with the permit application. For the purpose of the grading permit application / review, the SWPPP/ESCP includes all documents referenced in the "Content Location" column of Appendix K.

What are the inspection requirements?

The General Contractor is responsible for performing stormwater inspections per the project’s inspection requirements listed in the ESCP/SWPPP using the University’s  Appendix L:Construction Stormwater Inspection Checklist or equivalent form containing all items in the University’s Appendix L.

In addition to the self performed contractor inspections, the Building Code Department (BCD) must be contacted when ready for the following grading permit inspections:

  • Pre-construction inspection – After placement of erosion and sediment control features , and prior to any construction excavations.
  • Pre-permanent BMP installation inspection - when the project is ready to install a permanent stormwater treatment device(s), if applicable.
  • Final stabilization inspection – after  site restoration activities are complete and final stabilization requirements are met, but before temporary erosion and sediment control devices are removed.

Final stabilization inspection should be requested when:

  • All construction activity is complete.
  • Permanent cover has been established across the project site.
  • Vegetative cover must consist of a uniform perennial vegetation with a density of 70 percent of its expected final growth.
  • Project related sediment has been removed from permanent stormwater treatment and/or conveyance systems downstream.

Periodic unannounced inspections by the BCD, or other University staff, may be conducted , based on project scope, duration, receiving water status, and/or public complaints.

What Are the Grading Permit Close-Out Requirements?

The project must pass the final stabilization inspection and then remove all synthetic temporary erosion and sediment control BMPs.

For projects with an MPCA Construction Stormwater Permit a copy of the Notice of Termination (NOT) must be submitted to the BCD official after successful completion of the final stabilization inspection.

Frequently Asked Questions

Expand all

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Find My University Representative and Project Number?

Finding Your University Representative (University Rep)

The University Representative is a U of M contact on the project that may have the title of Project Manager, Project Coordinator, Team Manager or Owner’s Representative.  They are responsible to ensure that work is ready for the permitting process and may be from: Capital Project Management (CPM), Facilities Management (FM), UConstruction, a System Campus Facilities Department, or Research and Outreach Centers.

If you do not know who your University Rep is, contact the entity that hired you.

Getting a Project or Work Task ID

The Project Number or Work Task ID is required prior to applying for a permit.  Contact your University Representative to get this information.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Permit?

Allow 2-4 weeks for permit approval. The time is based on the complexity of the work and the completeness of the submitted information.

Which Inspections Are Required?

The required inspections are based on the type of work being performed and will be identified during permit approval and documented on the Inspection Record Card when the permit is issued.

For more information about inspections, visit our Inspections page.


How Do I Pay My Permit Fees?

Permit fees can be paid by check, credit card, or by University of Minnesota Enterprise Financial System (EFS). The fees due will display in the online application system when the permit has been reviewed and approved.

Paying By Check

Checks should be made payable to the U of MN Building Code Department and can be mailed to:

University of Minnesota Building Code Department
270 Donhowe Building
319 15th Ave SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

When the payment has been received an email will be sent stating that the permit is issued and you can print the Permit and Inspection Record.

Paying by Credit Card

You will receive an email that the permit is ready to be paid for.  When you complete the payment, the permit will be issued and the Permit and Inspection Record can be printed.

Paying by U of M EFS Number

Select U of M Budget as the Payment Method when applying for the permit and enter the correct budget string information.  When the permit is approved the payment will be applied.  You will receive an email that the permit has been issued and you can print the Permit and Inspection Record.

How Do I Print My Permit Documents?

Printing the Permit and Inspection Record

  1. Visit our online application system
  2. Click Search Applications
  3. Select the Application ID.
  4. Click on Reports in the menu at the top of the page.
  5. Select the report to print  and print the document. 

Printing the reviewed documents

  1. Visit our online application system
  2. Click Search Applications
  3. Select the Application ID
  4.  Select attachments under Record Info
  5. Click in the file name for the Type of Reviewed plans
  6. Print

The Permit, Inspection Record, and Reviewed, Stamped Plans are required to be onsite for inspections.