A right of way is the publicly owned area in a development or neighborhood. Rights of way are important for the installation and maintenance of streets and private and public utilities, including electrical, phone, sewer and water, and storm sewer lines. A common misconception is that the homeowner’s or business owner’s property line goes right up to the curb. It does not. The public owns a certain amount of the land behind the curb (right of way) that extends into the residential or business property line. The size of the right of way is not the same for every property. The right of way area behind the curb is also used for snow storage when the city plows streets. The city administers the use of this area through a permitting process. Contact City Engineering office at 507-645-3020 for further assistance.