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Bicycle Parking Guidance

Transportation Council
Eoin Wrafter, Commissioner


Bicycle parking is critical, since people are much more likely to ride to a destination if there is a convenient, secure place to lock their bike. There are two main types of bike parking: short-term and long-term, which are described below.

For sample bicycle parking codes, see Walk Bike Dutchess, Appendix C.

For an inventory of existing bicycle parking in Dutchess County, see our online bicycle parking finder map. Let us know if we are missing a location!


  1. Short-Term Bicycle Parking:
    • Provide at all public facilities, as well as shops, restaurants, parks, and other destinations where bikes will be parked for up to 2 hours.
    • "Inverted U" racks are typically best. Artistic racks are also possible as long as they meet the design guidelines below.
    • Racks can be covered to provide protection from weather. 
    • Maximize convenience: should be in a visible location as close to the building entrance as practical.

      • Features of a good bicycle rack include:
        • Stable structure and permanent foundation that is securely anchored in the ground
        • Supports the bicycle at two points above its center of gravity
        • Design that prevents the bicycle from tipping over
        • Ability to support a variety of bicycle sizes and frame shapes
        • Accommodates high-security U-shaped bike locks
        • Space to secure the frame and one or both wheels to the rack
        • Keeps bicycle wheels on the ground
        • Contains no sharp edges or protruding elements
      • Bicycle racks must NOT:
        • Only support the bicycle at 1 point
        • Allow the bicycle to fall, which can damage the bicycle and block pedestrian right-of-way
        • Have sharp edges that can be hazardous to the visually impaired
        • Support the bicycle by one wheel
        • Connect to each other with a bar across the top (that blocks certain handlebars and baskets)
        • Suspend any part of the bicycle in the air
      Location (see also diagram on page 12 of APBP's Essentials of Bike Parking):
      • Racks placed perpendicular to a building wall should be at least 4 feet from the wall to allow the frame and at least one wheel to be locked securely to the rack.
      • Racks placed parallel to a building wall should be at least 3 feet from the wall.
      • Racks aligned side by side should be at least 3 feet from each other; racks aligned end-to-end should be at least 8 feet apart.
      • Racks parallel to a curb should be at least 2 feet from the back of the curb; racks perpendicular to a curb should be at least 3 feet from the back of the curb.
      • Ensure that bicycle parking does not restrict pedestrian access on sidewalks or near building entrances.
  2. Long-Term Bicycle Parking:
    • Provide long-term parking at offices, housing complexes, transit stations, schools, and other destinations where the bike will be parked for more than two hours.
    • Long-term parking should be provided by a secure, sheltered facility. At a minimum, this could be a covered bike rack area.
    • Where possible, provide an enclosed, locked or monitored facility—such as a bicycle cage, bicycle lockers, or a bicycle room (such as in a parking garage).
    • Access can be limited through the use of a key or key card. 
    • Maximize security: parking areas should be well-lit and easy to find.

Note: Provide signage and/or pavement markings to direct bicyclists to parking.


  1. Additional Resources:
  2. Bicycle Parking Manufacturers:

Bicycle Parking can be creative!


Bicycle Rack Designs

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