Plan Review for Wells
What do I need to include in a submittal of community water supply well plans and specifications?
- The legal description of the proposed well location including the township, range, section, and quarter numbers.
- A scaled site plan that shows the proposed location of the well, grading, property lines, septic tanks, drainfields, buried sewer lines, chemical storage areas (if applicable), and other sources of possible contamination. The site plan should have a scale of one inch equals 50 feet and should show everything within 150 feet of the well.
- A well profile plan showing the proposed well construction including depths, casings, grouting material, pitless unit, wellhead construction, and venting provisions.
- A log of all anticipated geological formations that will be encountered.
- Procedures for the construction, testing, development, and disinfection of the well.
- Material specifications for the casing, screen, grout, gravel pack, wellhead completion, etc.
- Make, model, and capacity of the well pump, motor, and pitless unit.
- Documentation showing that the system owner either owns or legally controls all land within a 50 foot radius of the proposed well location.
- Completed Preliminary Wellhead Protection Area Worksheet (PDF).
In addition to submitting plans and specifications, what other actions need to be taken before the MDH can grant approval for the construction of a new community water supply well?
- An on-site inspection of the proposed well location must be conducted by a representative of the MDH. Please contact the MDH Source Water Protection Unit’s Hydrologist (PDF) for your area to arrange for a well site inspection.
- Systems with a population over 1,000 must have a current Water Supply Plan that has been approved by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and implemented. Please see the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Public Water Supply Plan page or call 651-259-5703 for more information.
What restrictions need to be taken into account when locating a well?
- The location must comply with the isolation distance requirements described in Minnesota Rules, part 4725.4450, which are summarized in this List of Isolation Distances. However, community public water supply wells have additional isolation distances in Minnesota Rules, part 4725.5850 that must be met. In no case is a community water supply well allowed closer than 50 feet to a source of contamination, including buried sewer.
- Flood waters from the highest flood of record must not reach to within 50 feet of the well.
- The ordinary high water level of a stream, river, pond, storm water retention pond, lake, or reservoir must not be closer than 50 feet to the well.
In an emergency, can a community well be constructed without plan review prior to construction?
Yes. However, the emergency condition must be a situation in which a delay of construction poses an immediate and significant danger to public health or safety. A system being out of water due to a well collapse or natural disaster would be an example of such a situation. The following actions must still be taken:
- A verbal request to construct the well in an emergency must be made to MDH Community Plan Review staff prior to construction.
- A verbal notification to MDH Well Management staff is required at least 24 hours prior to well construction.
- A written notification must be sent to the MDH within five working days after the initial emergency notification.
- Complete as-built plans and specifications for the well construction, along with the appropriate fee, must be submitted to the MDH for review as soon as possible after the well is constructed.
What is required when converting an existing public water supply well to a municipal well?
- An on-site inspection of the existing well location must be conducted by a representative of the MDH.
- The city must own or legally control all land within at least a 50 foot radius around the well.
- A site plan of the existing well site showing all potential sources of contamination, grading, property lines, etc., must be submitted for review with the appropriate fee.
- A copy of the well log must be submitted for review.
- The well must be televised and a copy of the tape provided to the MDH for review.
- Samples must be collected from the well and analyzed for the water quality parameters required by the MDH.
- Wells not previously used as public water supply wells may be allowed to be converted to community water supply wells only if the wells meet the requirements of Minnesota Rules, chapter 4725.
Do well rehabilitation projects require a plan review?
Projects proposing the rehabilitation of wells are only required to be submitted for review if they involve significant modifications to the existing well, such as the installation of new casing or changing the depth of the well.
What if a proposed well cannot meet the requirements of Minnesota Rules, chapter 4725?
A Variance Request Application (PDF) must be completed and submitted to the MDH Section of Well Management. The variance must be reviewed and approved by the MDH prior to the construction of the well.