Minnesota Department of Transportation

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Project development

Environmental process | Environmental review

Section 6(f)/Land and Water Conservation Fund (LAWCON) Act

Section 6(f) Standard Attachment for Programmatic Categorical Exclusion


The purpose of the LAWCON is to help preserve, develop, and provide accessibility to outdoor recreation resources. It stipulates that any land acquired or developed with LAWCON funds cannot be converted to other than outdoor recreational use unless replacement land of at least equal fair market value and reasonably equivalent usefulness is provided.

When to use this subject

Follow LAWCON on any transportation project, regardless of the funding source, where you are impacting land acquired or developed with LAWCON funds, which is therefore subject to Section 6(f) of the Land and Water Conservation Act.

To determine if any land the state is acquiring is subject to Section 6(f), check the list of Grant-Funded Parks and Natural Areas  on the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources’ (MNDNR) LAWCON website, which also includes parks that have state grants with restrictions similar to those of the LAWCON program. This list is always expanding.  Consult the MNDNR for assistance. See the list in the Grants Manager listings on the MNDNR’s LAWCON website.

For specific process information, see the process, other guidance pages and/or contact the individual on the contacts page.

How this subject fits into the overall project development process

Start looking at possible Section 6(f) impacts early in the project planning or scoping phase. However, efforts must be made to avoid, minimize, and mitigate impacts to Section 6(f) properties. If the state is acquiring land subject to Section 6(f), you must satisfy the Section 6(f) procedural requirements and provide documentation in the environmental review document. 

Identify Section 6(f) involvement as soon as possible. The actual conversion approval process can be long, but identification of the replacement land must take place during the transportation project development process. The conversion approval does not need to be complete prior to signature of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) document; however, the replacement land must be deemed acceptable by the National Park Service (NPS). 

Usually, the District Right of Way Section conducts the Section 6(f) conversion.

Organizations involved