Secure bike parking is a critical amenity to get more people on two wheels. The SFMTA plays a proactive role in installing bike parking racks on sidewalks and in select on-street spaces for short-term parking. Every year, the SFMTA aims to install 500 to 1,000 bike racks across the city. You can also request a sidewalk bike rack or bike corral near you. Commuters may be interested in using long term bike parking, such as bike lockers to park their bike.
What Types Of Bike Parking Are Available In San Francisco?
The SFMTA installs racks for short-term bike parking in the public right-of-way (on the sidewalk or in the parking lane) by request, at no charge. The SFMTA does not install racks on private property or for purposes of longer-term bike storage. Only requests for locations where the SFMTA Bicycle Parking Guidelines can be met will be fulfilled. In general, there are two types of short-term bicycle parking, including: sidewalk bicycle racks and bicycle corrals.
Short-Term Bike Parking
Sidewalk Bike Racks
Sidewalk bicycle racks are installed on the sidewalk for short-term parking in the public right of way. Most sidewalk bicycle racks look like an inverted-U shape and up to two bicycles can be parked on the rack.
On-street bicycle parking corrals are bicycle racks placed in the parking lane on the roadway where short-term demand for bike parking is higher than can be accommodated on the sidewalk. Approximately 8 to 12 bikes can be parked in one car space—making bike corrals a comparatively efficient use of roadway space. If you're part of an agency, business, building, or organization interested in sponsoring a corral, take a look at the SFMTA's process for approving On-Street Bicycle Parking Corrals.
Long-Term Bike Parking
Long-term bicycle parking should be low or no cost to users, easy to use, and readily available in dense urban areas with demand for secure facilities. Most existing long-term bicycle parking in San Francisco is provided by our regional transit operators, BART and Caltrain.
The SFMTA provides long-term bicycle parking options primarily at city-owned garages in and around downtown. Before planning your trip, take a look at the bicycle parking options at SFMTA Garages. The SFMTA, in conjunction with the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, has also installed bicycle lockers at 22nd Street Caltrain Station.
How Can I Request A Bike Rack or Corral?
If you’re interested in requesting a sidewalk bicycle rack, please visit our online public request form link below. Prior to submitting your request, please take a look at the Bicycle Rack Specifications and the Sidewalk Bicycle Rack Placement Guidelines (specifically pages 19-22). After receiving your request, the SFMTA will survey the location and if feasible install bicycle rack(s). Note that due to the high volume of rack requests we receive, installations generally take approximately 5-6 months from the time of request.
If you're interested in sponsoring an on-street bicycle corral, please find the application form at the link below. Please carefully review the Bike Corral Standards and Application Form (linked PDF) for more information prior to submitting an application. To request a corral, please complete and submit the final page of the form to firstname.lastname@example.org. Note that installation generally takes approximately 6 months from the time that we receive your request.
To report graffiti and/or damaged bike racks, click the link below:
How Can I Request That a Bike Rack Be Moved or Removed?
Bike parking is a public amenity that not only helps support bike riding in the city, but also is critical infrastructure for other sustainable modes of travel including bikeshare and scootershare. Like other public amenities in the sidewalk furniture zone, bike parking is installed in both commercial and residential areas.
Requests to remove bike racks with the following justifications will not be considered:
- I don't like where the rack is or how it looks
- I did not request a rack in front of my home or business
- Bike racks aren't needed here
The SFMTA will consider, on a case-by-case basis, requests to move or remove bike racks with these justifications:
- The rack does not meet the SFMTA's placement guidelines (see page 21) and is blocking the accessible pedestrian path of travel
- The rack is blocking the accessible path of travel into or out of my business's shared spaces parklet
- The rack needs to be removed to facilitate a construction project
If you believe that your request to move or remove a bike rack meets these criteria, please send your request to email@example.com.
Where Is Bicycle Parking Located In The City?
There are over 5,000 bicycle racks and corrals citywide available for public use. Most existing long-term bicycle parking in San Francisco is provided by our regional transit operators, BART and Caltrain.
The SFMTA provides long-term bicycle parking options in city-owned garages in and around downtown with a combination of bicycle racks at various public garages throughout the city.
Before planning your trip, take a look at the bicycle parking options available at selected SFMTA Garages.
Are Sidewalk Bicycle Racks Part Of Your Building Permit Approval Process?
SFMTA has final authority on the type, placement and number of short-term bicycle racks within the public right-or-way. For anyone seeking a building permit in San Francisco, prior to issuance of the first architectural addenda, the project sponsor must contact the SFMTA Bike Parking Program at firstname.lastname@example.org to coordinate the installation of on-street bicycle racks and ensure that the proposed bicycle racks meet the SFMTA bicycle parking guidelines. Depending on local site conditions and anticipated demand, SFMTA may request the project sponsor pay an in-lieu fee for Class II bike racks (short-term bike parking) required by the Planning Code Sections 155.1, 155.4, and 155.5
For information on rack choice and placement, please review the SFMTA’s Bicycle Parking Guidelines, Standards, and Recommendations.
For information about planning code compliance, contact Code Enforcement, Planning Department at 415-575-6863, www.sf-planning.org
For information about long-term bike parking in San Francisco office buildings, please refer to the Employee Bike Access Bill passed by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 2012. This bill requires owners of commercial buildings to either provide secure bicycle parking in buildings or to allow the tenants to bring their bicycles into the building.
Long-Term Bicycle Parking Business Plan
The SFMTA is currently installing bicycle parking facilities thanks to funding by the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) Transportation Fund for Clean Air (TFCA) Bicycle Facilities Program (BFP) and County Program Manager’s Program.