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Bicycle Parking

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Bicycle parking is required for most uses to encourage bicycling as a mode of transportation in support of Portland’s growth. Convenient short-term bicycle parking is provided for customers and visitors. Secure and covered long-term bicycle parking is designed for residents and employees.
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Portland Zoning Code on bicycle parking 

This page summarizes the Portland Zoning Code on Minimum Required Bicycle Parking and Bicycle Parking Development Standards. 

These standards include the requirements for the number of spaces, location, and rack designs for both long-term and short-term bicycle parking. 

When is bicycle parking required? 

  • Sites with five or more dwelling units 

  • Bike parking is required in all zones  

  • Amount of parking spaces is determined by use category (i.e. office, retail, household living, etc.) 

  • Long-term and short-term bike parking are required for most uses 

Number of bicycle parking spaces 

The number of required bicycle parking spaces depends on how the site is used and how close the site is to the Central City.

Determine how many short- and long-term spaces are needed

  1. First, identify the primary use at the site. Find the description of use categories listed in 33.920.
     
  2. Use the Bicycle Parking Area Map 266-1 to determine if your site is located in Standard A area or Standard B area. 
     
  3. Use the Minimum Required Bicycle Parking Spaces Table 266-6 to determine the number of spaces required. If the use is not listed in the table, then no bike parking is required. 

When a site has two primary uses, such as an apartment building with ground floor retail, the number of spaces is the sum of the number of spaces required for the dwelling units plus the number required for the retail floor area.  

When there is a primary use and an accessory use, such as a retail store with a storeroom and office, the number of spaces is based on the entire floor area as a retail use.  

Location of bicycle parking 

If short- or long-term bicycle parking is not visible from the streets or main building entrance, a sign must be permanently posted at the main entrance indicating the location of the bicycle parking. 

Short-term bicycle parking  

Short-Term Bicycle Parking must be located outside a building and at the same grade as the sidewalk or at a location that can be reached by an accessible route.  

One main entrance to a building 

Diagram of short-term bike parking for a building with one main entrance. the bicycle parking must be within 50 feet of the main entrance to the building as measured along the most direct pedestrian access route.
Figure 266-15. Short-term bike parking – one building, one entrance

The bicycle parking must be located within 50 feet of the main entrance as measured along the most direct pedestrian access route as shown in Figure 266-15. 

More than one main entrance to a building 

Bicycle parking must be located along all of the facades with a main entrance and within 50 feet of at least one main entrance on each façade with a main entrance. Additional standards apply for sites with more than one building and institutional campuses (see Standards for Short-term Bicycle Parking, 33.266.210.E.1.a.).  

Cannot comply with short-term bicycle parking standards? 

This option may not be used if there is adequate space to provide the parking on-site.

If you cannot comply with short-term bicycle parking standards, a payment may be made to the Bicycle Parking Fund instead of providing short-term bicycle parking on the site.

Bicycle parking racks in the right-of-way do not count toward the short-term bicycle parking requirement. A separate permit is required from the Portland Bureau of Transportation for any optional bicycle parking proposed in the right-of-way. Visit Transportation to apply to install bike racks on the sidewalk.

Long-term bicycle parking  

All long-term bicycle parking must be covered. Where the parking is not located within a building or locker, the cover must be permanent, impervious, and project a minimum of two feet beyond the bike parking space for portions of the structure that are not enclosed. 

Long-term bicycle parking must be secured by either being in a restricted access, lockable room or enclosure, or a bicycle locker. All-access routes and bicycle parking spaces must be lighted to a level where the system can be used at night by employees and residents. 

Provide racks or lockers that meet the following: 

  • Within a building, including on the ground floor or on individual building floors

  • On-site, including in parking areas and structured parking

  • In an area where the closest point is within 300 feet of the site; or 

  • In a residential dwelling unit

Within a dwelling unit

For long-term bicycle parking located within a dwelling unit, the following applies: 

  • Generally, up to 50 percent of the long-term bicycle spaces may be provided within the dwelling units. For sites with 12 or fewer dwelling units, all the required bicycle parking may be located within the units. If there are no elevators in the building, long-term bicycle parking can only be provided in units on the ground floor. 

  • Bicycle parking must be located within 15 feet of the entrance to the dwelling unit. 

  • Bicycle parking must include a rack and be in a closet or alcove space that meets the minimum dimensions for bicycle parking spaces in Table 266-7

For sites with multiple primary uses

Long-term bicycle parking must be provided in an area that is accessible for all the uses or tenants.

Bicycle parking racks and space dimensions 

All short- and long-term bicycle parking spaces must meet minimum dimensions based on the type of rack and how it is mounted to the ground or wall. The bicycle parking space and maneuvering area must be hard surfaced. 

Bicycle parking racks 

Where bicycle parking is provided in racks, the racks must meet the following standards (these standards do not apply to racks located within dwelling units): 

  • The rack must be designed so that the bicycle frame and one wheel can be locked to a rigid portion of the rack with a U-shaped shackle lock when both wheels are left on the bicycle (cables attached to the rack are not considered part of the rack); 

  • If the rack is a horizontal rack, it must support the bicycle at two points, including the frame; and 

  • The rack must be securely anchored with tamper-resistant hardware. 

Required bike parking spaces must meet the minimum size requirements in Table 266-7.  

Bicycle space

Diagram of two bicycle orientations: horizontal and vertical bike parking. Shows the measurements for the standard required bicycle space is 2 feet wide, 6 feet long and 3 feet 4 inches tall.
Figure 266-8. Bicycle parking: standard spacing requirements

The standard required bicycle space is 2 feet wide, 6 feet long, and 3 feet 4 inches tall as shown in Figure 266-8. There must be at least 5 feet behind all bicycle parking spaces to allow room for bicycle maneuvering as shown in Figure 266-9.  

Diagram of horizontal bicycle parking spaces. Looking top down on eight bikes in four pairs connected to a bike rack.
Figure 266-9. Bicycle parking horizontal spaces: side-by-side

Where short-term bicycle parking is adjacent to a public sidewalk, the maneuvering area may extend into the right-of-way. There must be 2 feet 6 inches between the rack and any wall as shown in Figure 266-9.  

Sites with more than 20 long-term spaces 

When more than 20 long-term bicycle parking spaces are required, the types of racks have additional requirements: 

  • At least 30 percent of the spaces must be in a horizontal rack, or on the lower level of a stacked bicycle parking rack. 

  • At least 5 percent of the spaces must accommodate a larger bicycle space, placed in a horizontal rack. 

  • At least 5 percent of the spaces must have electrical sockets accessible to the spaces. Each electrical socket must be accessible to horizontal bicycle spaces. 

Bicycle lockers 

If bicycle parking is provided in bike lockers, they must be securely anchored to the ground. The lockers must either have a minimum depth of 6 feet with an access door that is a minimum of 2 feet wide or be in a triangular layout that is 6 feet deep with access doors at least 2 feet wide on each end. 

Stacked bicycle parking 

Stacked bike parking may be provided in racks with one tier on top of another. The rack must include a mechanically assisted lifting mechanism to mount the bicycle on the top tier. 

Bicycle parking information on plans 

The following information must be submitted on building permit plans: 

  • Location and dimensions of short- and long-term bicycle parking spaces with maneuvering area to meet bicycle parking requirements; and 

  • A detailed drawing of the model or design of the bicycle parking racks to be installed with information about how the rack is secured.

Change in use on a site 

When there is a change in use on a site and the existing bicycle parking does not meet the number of spaces required, additional bicycle parking must be provided to meet the minimum for the new use regardless of the project valuation. 

Nonconforming Development Upgrades 

Bicycle parking is included in the list of standards that are subject to Nonconforming Development Upgrades in 33.258.070.

When improvements at a site are above the threshold requiring site upgrades, the cost of providing bicycle parking or upgrading existing racks to meet the standard is included in the required improvements.

This upgrade is limited to short-term bicycle parking unless the project is a major remodel or there is accessory surface parking on the site.

School bicycle parking requirements 

Bicycle parking requirements for school uses are different than the above. See the Portland Zoning Code Sections 33.266.200 and 33.266.210 for information. 

Questions?  

If you have questions about the bicycle parking requirements, please schedule a free 15-Minute appointment with a City Planner or call 503-823-7300 to leave a message for a City Planner.