Langlade County Ordinance


Boathouse Standards


Minimum setback

3 feet to ordinary high-water mark

Maximum setback

20 feet to ordinary high-water mark

Maximum size


300 square feet
Maximum 14 feet wide
Maximum 12 feet high

Roof slope

Greater than 4:12 and less than 6:12 rise-to-run

Other standards

Must be located in viewing corridor
Must comply with standards for land disturbing activities
Construction materials must blend with natural groundcover
Living quarters, decks, plumbing are prohibited
Prohibited on slopes greater than 45%

Why we have this in our ordinance

Excess structures add visual clutter to the shoreland, especially when viewed from the water.

Example of visual clutter. Example of boathouse blending in with the natural surroundings.

What you can do...

  • Accessory Structures – Incorporate storage and other uses into or attached to the main structure to eliminate the need for additional structures. If you must add an accessory structure, build according to the Langlade County Shoreland Zoning Ordinance and use design and color principles that blend in with the natural surroundings. Locate accessory structures away from the view of the lake or river.
  • Docks and Boat Storage – Limit their impact by keeping the size and length to a minimum and designing them to blend in with the shoreline.

Shoreland Lighting/Signage

Langlade County Ordinance

  • Flashing or rotating exterior lighting is prohibited. Off premise commercial signs visible from the water are prohibited.

Why we have this in our ordinance

Recent surveys of lake property owners discovered that natural beauty and enjoying the view were the top reasons why they owned property on a lake.

What you can do...

Lighting – By using shielding on lighting, the view from the water will be enhanced and will be less distractive to people passing by.

Shore Protection Structures

Langlade County Ordinance


Why we have this in our ordinance

Maintaining natural buffer strips limits the need to alter the shore with a hard engineered structure. Retaining walls have a negative visual impact and are discouraged because of their unnatural appearance and high failure rate. In many cases, keeping existing vegetation in place or supplemental plantings along your shoreline minimizes soil erosion and enhances fish and wildlife habitat.

What you can do...

Shore Alteration – Design any shoreline alterations as sensitively as possible, using natural materials whenever possible. Any alteration to the shoreline will require review from the LRRD and DNR. If you are considering using rip rap or a bioengineered shore protection structure, be sure to obtain and complete a permit application and discuss your plan with the WDNR Water Management Specialist for Langlade County.

Natural Coir Log After Installation Natural Coir Log One Year Later

Rock Rip Rap Sterile Non-natural Shoreline