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Regulatory and Permitting Information Desktop Toolkit

Illinois State Highway Right-of-Way Permit (3-IL-c)

In Illinois, a developer may need a Utility Permit from the Illinois Department of Transportation (“IDOT”) to work within the right-of-way of an Interstate, U.S. State route, Illinois state route, or state maintained roadway. 606 I.C.S §9-113; Illinois Department of Transportation Website – Utility Permits. IDOT and county highway authorities have authority to “...promulgate reasonable and necessary rules, regulations and specification for state highway right-of-ways.” 606 I.C.S §9-113(b). IDOT and county highway authorities regulate state highway encroachments pursuant to Illinois – 605 I.L.C.S. §§ 9-101 et seq., General Highway Provisions, and Illinois Regulations – 92 I.A.C. §§ 530 et seq., Accommodation of Utilities on Right-of-Way.


State Highway Right-of-Way Permit Process

3-IL-c.1 – Contact District IDOT Office

A developer should contact the district Illinois Department of Transportation (“IDOT”), where the proposed project will be located, for specific permit requirements. Illinois Department of Transportation Website – Utility Permits. The developer may utilize the IDOT District Map and IDOT District Project Contact Page for further information. Illinois Department of Transportation Website – Utility Permits.

3-IL-c.2 – Submit Utility Permit Application

The developer must submit two complete copies of the Illinois Department of Transportation – Highway Utility Permit Application (“Utility Permit Application”) or an IDOT region specific Highway Utility Permit Application to the applicable IDOT district office for processing. 606 I.C.S §9-113; Illinois Department of Transportation Website – Utility Permits. The Utility Permit Application should include, at minimum, the following:

  • The applicant’s (developer) name, address, and contact information;
  • A detailed description of the proposed work and/or attached sketch or plans of the proposed project, including location, physical description and the type of materials to be used. Scale drawings are preferred;
  • A time schedule for initiation and completion of various steps of the work proposed;
  • Two copies of a surety bond, if required pursuant to 92 I.A.C. §530.270; and
  • Applicant (developer) must show compliance with other State agencies, or that the regulations of no other State agencies are relevant to what has been proposed by the applicant (developer).

606 I.C.S §9-113; Illinois Department of Transportation Website – Utility Permits; and 92 I.A.C. §530.100.

3-IL-c.3 to 3-IL-c.4 – Review Utility Permit Application for Completeness

IDOT will review the Utility Permit Application materials for administrative and technical completeness. IDOT may require the developer submit supplemental information. During the review, IDOT will determine whether the proposed project requires a surety bond pursuant to 92 I.A.C. §530.270.

Illinois Department of Transportation Website – Utility Permits.

3-IL-c.5 to 3-IL-c.6 – Does IDOT Approve the Application?

After reviewing the Utility Permit Application materials, IDOT will make a permit determination which must preserve the “…integrity, safe usage, and visual qualities of the State Highway System.” 92 I.A.C. § 530.10(a). IDOT must make a decision regarding the accommodation of a utility at a particular location through sound engineering practices. 92 I.A.C. § 530.10(b). IDOT will also “…evaluate the direct and indirect environmental and economic effects of any loss of productive agricultural land which would result from the disapproval of the use of the right-of-way of a highway for the accommodation of a utility.” 92 I.A.C. § 530.10(c). IDOT should grant the Utility Permit Application unless:

  • “...[T]he applicant (developer) has a history of not responding to IDOT requests;
  • There is no public need for the placement of the requested facility on the highway right-of-way;
  • The placement of the requested facility on the highway right-of-way will unduly threaten the safety and convenience of highway users;
  • That the proposed facility, its installation, or its maintenance will interfere with the ability of IDOT to construct, maintain, operate or improve the highway, including appurtenant facilities;
  • The proposed installation is not in compliance with 605 I.L.C.S. §113(a) or Illinois Regulations – 92 I.A.C. §§ 530 et seq., Accommodation of Utilities on Right-of-Way; or
  • The applicant (developer) does not have liability insurance sufficient to satisfy 92 I.A.C. §530.50.

92 I.A.C. §530.800.

If IDOT denies the Utility Permit, IDOT must submit a letter to the utility (developer) explaining the reason for denial. The developer may resubmit the application for consideration if the developer can modify the application to meet IDOT’s objectives as specified in the letter of denial. 92 I.A.C. § 530.800.

If IDOT grants the Utility Permit, IDOT will submit a letter to the utility (developer) granting the Utility Permit subject to terms and conditions in accordance with Illinois – 605 I.L.C.S. §§ 9-101 et seq., General Highway Provisions, Illinois Regulations – 92 I.A.C. §§ 530 et seq., Accommodation of Utilities on Right-of-Way, and the public interest. 605 I.L.C.S. §9-113(h).

3-IL-c.7 – Appeal Decision (If Applicable)

An applicant (developer) may appeal IDOT decision regarding the issuance of a Utility Permit or the conditions upon the issuance, within fifteen (15) days after the issuance of IDOT permit decision, to the Chief of IDOT’s Central Bureau of Maintenance. 92 I.A.C. § 530.900.




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