St. Louis Co. Board on Track to Allowing ATVs on Roads

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St. Louis County commissioners have passed a resolution that is affecting local ATV riders.

The board is on track to approving an interim permitting process that will allow riders to go on roads that connect trails.

Currently, riders have to lug around their trailers and stop on roads mid-ride.

“What we’re looking to do is make those trail connections with the county roads. So, essentially you can go out on an ATV, do an all day ride, and not have to trailer your vehicle around,” said Jim Foldesi, St. Louis County Public Works director.

Foldesi said the board is learning from surrounding counties that are already allowing riders on roads like Koochiching, Itasca, Lake, and Pine.

“As we go through this ordinance process, we’re going to learn what’s best for those counties and we’re going to try to take the best of all those and put it together in our St. Louis County ordinance,” said Foldesi.

Representatives from the Voyageur ATV Club said an ordinance would also help boost area tourism.

“Right now, ATV enthusiasts are going to other places. They’re going to Wisconsin. They’re going to South Dakota. We want them to come to northern Minnesota and play up here. We’ve got fabulous country up here in Voyageur country,” said Bruce Beske, a club member.

Commissioners will have their final vote on the proposed ordinance at their meeting September 22.

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