US Army Corps of Engineers
Baltimore District Website

How to apply for a permit in Virginia

For work in certain military installations of northern Virginia within the geographic boundaries of the Baltimore District (i.e. Fort Belvoir, Fort Myer, and the Pentagon) use the following applications listed below, as appropriate.  You may download, write, or call the offices below for an application. It is important that you provide complete information in the application, as requested.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Baltimore District - CENAB-OPR-M
2 Hopkins Plaza
Baltimore, Maryland 21201
(410) 962-3670

A copy of the application for work in northern Virginia should also be sent to:

Ms. Trisha Beasley
Virginia Department of Environmental Quality
Northern Regional Office
13901 Crown Court
Woodbridge, Virginia 22193
(571) 359-2545


A copy of the application for work within the Fairfax County intertidal zone should also be sent to:

Ms. Erin Haley
Fairfax County Wetlands Board
Department of Planning and Zoning
12055 Government Center Parkway, Suite #730
Fairfax, Virginia 22035
(703) 324-1380


The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality’s Standard Joint Permit Application (JPA) or Tidewater JPA may be obtained from their website:

The Fairfax County Wetland Board application for work within the intertidal zone may be obtained from their website:

The Process: After the state or Corps office receives the application, it will be assigned an identification number. Then within 15 days of receipt of all the required information, a determination will be made regarding the type of permit required. Depending on the type of permit process, a public notice will be issued with a 15-day to 30-day comment period, if necessary. The proposal is reviewed by the Corps, general public, special interest groups, and state, local and other related federal agencies. After the comment period, the Corps reviews all comments, and may consult other federal agencies. The Corps may ask you for additional information and conduct a public hearing, if needed. For individual permits, when all considerations are satisfied, the District Engineer makes a decision to either issue or deny the permit application. You will than receive a permit or written explanation of the reason for denial. For State Programmatic General Permits, this federal permit is usually issued along with the State's authorization.

To view the USACE regulatory process flow chart, please click here.

Permits Types and Processes

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District authorizes work in waters of the United States under four types of permits: State Programmatic General Permits (MD & PA only), Nationwide Permits, Letters of Permission, and Individual Permits.

Nationwide Permits in Virginia
Nationwide Permits (NWPs) are general permits issued on a nationwide basis to authorize minor activities with minimal evaluation time. NWPs have been established to reduce the regulatory reporting burden for specific activities that have no more than minimal impacts to the aquatic environment.

Please NOTE, most NWPs have been suspended in Maryland and Pennsylvania since there are State Programmatic General Permits already in place. On March 20, 2017, the Baltimore District issued a Special Public Notice #17-14 announcing the final regional conditions for the 2017 Nationwide Permits in the State of Maryland, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania within the Baltimore and Philadelphia District’s regulatory geographic boundaries, the District of Columbia, and certain military installations of northern Virginia (i.e., Fort Belvoir, Fort Myer, and the Pentagon).  

Letter of Permission

A Letter of Permission (LOP), as described in 33 CFR 325.2(e)(1), is a type of standard permit issued through an abbreviated processing procedure that includes coordination with federal and state resource agencies and a public interest evaluation, but without the publishing of an individual public notice. LOP will not be used to authorize the transportation of dredged material for the purpose of placing it in ocean waters. 

For projects subject to Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899, LOPs may be used when the District Engineer has concluded that the proposed work would be: 1) minor; 2) would not have significant individual or cumulative impacts on environmental values; and 3) should encounter no appreciable opposition. 

For projects subject to section 404 of the Clean Water Act, LOPs may be used after the District Engineer: 1) consults with federal and state fish and wildlife agencies, the Regional Administrator, Environmental Protection Agency, the state water quality certifying agency and, if appropriate, the state Coastal Zone Management Agency, to develop a list of categories of activities proposed for authorization under LOP procedures; 2) issues a public notice advertising the proposed list and LOP procedures, requesting comments and offering an opportunity for public hearing; and 3) the 401 certification has been issued or waived and, if appropriate, CZM consistency concurrence obtained or presumed either on a generic or individual basis. 

Individual Permits

Individual permits (IPs - also known as a standard permits - SPs) are generally reserved for projects with potential for substantial environmental impacts. An IP requires a full public interest review, including public notices and coordination with involved agencies, interested parties and the general public.

View the Step-by-Step Application Review Process.


The Corps of Engineers has an administrative appeal process whereby applicants and landowners may appeal denied permits, issued permits that contain requirements that are unacceptable to the applicant, or approved jurisdictional determinations. Although these decisions are made by Corps District offices, requests for appeals of such decisions are appealed to the Corps Division offices. Requests for appeal must be furnished to the Division office within 60 days of the date of the appealable decision. A site visit or an appeal conference or meeting may be conducted during the appeal process. A decision on the merits of the appeal based on the administrative record is normally made in 90 days. The Division will either uphold the District decision or send the case back to the District, with direction to make a new decision.

Procedures for appealing Corps permitting decisions are found at 33 CFR Part 331.