A new approach is presented for the optimization of steel lattice towers by combining genetic algorithms and an object-oriented approach. The purpose of this approach is to eliminate the difficulties in the handling of large size problems such as lattice towers. Improved search and rapid convergence are obtained by considering the lattice tower as a set of small objects and combining these objects into a system. This is possible with serial cantilever structures such as lattice towers. A tower consists of panel objects, which can be classified as separate objects, as they possess an independent property as well as inherent properties. This can considerably reduce the design space of the problem and enhance the result. An optimization approach for the steel lattice tower problem using objects and genetic algorithms is presented here. The paper also describes the algorithm with practical design considerations used for this approach. To demonstrate the approach, a typical tower configuration with practical constraints has been considered for discrete optimization with the new approach and compared with the results of a normal approach in which the full tower is considered. ©ASCE.