Code of the District of Columbia

Chapter 16. Regulation of Bicycles.


Subchapter I. General Provisions.

Part A. Bicycle Safety.

§ 50–1601. Findings.

The Council of the District of Columbia finds that:

(1) Increased use of bicycles for transportation and recreation will result in improved air quality, reduced levels of noise and traffic congestion, greater energy conservation, lower transportation costs, fewer parking problems, and increased physical fitness.

(2) Bicycle fatalities and accidents can be reduced through broad-based education and facilities improvements.

(3) The promotion of bicycle transportation and safety in the District of Columbia (“District”) requires the implementation of a comprehensive bicycle transportation and safety program.

(4) A bicycle office is required to coordinate the comprehensive program.

(5) Disability and death from injuries sustained in bicycling accidents are a serious threat to the health, welfare and safety of District children.

(6) Each year approximately 290 children are involved in fatal accidents, and nearly 400,000 are injured with varying degrees of severity in bicycle related injuries or crashes.

(7) Head injuries account for over 60% of bicycle related fatalities and 1/3 of bicycle related emergency room visits.

(8) Use of a bicycle helmet is the single, most effective preventive measure of reducing head injuries 85%, and brain injuries or serious disabilities by 88% from bicycle accidents.

(9) Only 15% of bicyclists use proper head protective equipment, and some studies show that bicycle helmet usage for children under 16 years of age ranges from 5% to 15%.


(Mar. 16, 1985, D.C. Law 5-179, § 2, 32 DCR 764; May 23, 2000, D.C. Law 13-112, § 2(a), 47 DCR 1985.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 40-1401.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 13-112 added subsecs. (5) to (9).


§ 50–1602. Comprehensive Bicycle Transportation and Safety Program.

(a) There shall be established in the District of Columbia a Comprehensive Bicycle Transportation and Safety Program to promote the safe and convenient use of the bicycle as a means of transportation and recreation.

(b) The scope of the program shall include, but not be limited to:

(1) Planning and supporting road improvements for bicyclists, such as wide curb lanes, smooth shoulders, bicyclist-oriented signs and signals, and removal of hazards;

(2) Improving access for bicyclists on the road network and on all modes of public transportation;

(3) Monitoring construction and repair projects to ensure that no additional hazards or obstacles to bicyclists are created as the transportation system is built or rebuilt;

(4) Assisting, organizing, and coordinating the planning, design, construction, improvement, repair, and maintenance of bicycle facilities, such as bicycle paths and bicycle lanes, both within and separate from the highway rights-of-way;

(5) Promoting the installation of secure and convenient bicycle parking facilities;

(6) Organizing safety education and training programs for young and adult bicyclists, as well as for motorists, to reduce bicycling accidents and foster safe use of bicycles; and

(7) Promoting effective traffic law enforcement to protect the rights of all road users and to encourage good bicycling habits.


(Mar. 16, 1985, D.C. Law 5-179, § 3, 32 DCR 764.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 40-1402.


§ 50–1603. Office of Bicycle Transportation and Safety.

There shall be established within the Office of the Director of the District Department of Transportation an Office of Bicycle Transportation and Safety to promote the safe and convenient use of the bicycle as a means of transportation and recreation.

(1) The Office shall be headed by a bicycle coordinator who shall be a person with broad knowledge in all aspects of bicycle transportation and safety.

(2) The Office shall be staffed with a minimum of 2 full-time assistant bicycle coordinators who shall have appropriate experience and knowledge of bicycle matters.

(3) The duties of the bicycle coordinator shall include, but not be limited to:

(A) Administering the Comprehensive Bicycle Transportation and Safety Program;

(B) Serving as a contact for federal agencies, the press, civic organizations, and individuals on all matters related to bicycling;

(C) Establishing priorities and programming of bicycle facilities;

(D) Coordinating the District of Columbia’s bicycle program with all agencies on matters relating to bicycles, including transportation, recreation, touring, sports and racing, physical fitness, and economic development;

(E) Assisting the Mayor of the District of Columbia (“Mayor”), the Director of the District Department of Transportation, or a District agency in preparing budgetary, legislative, or regulatory proposals which may affect bicycling; and

(F) Evaluating and reporting annually to the Mayor and Director of the Department of Public Works on the District’s bicycling programs and recommending any needed changes in these programs.


(Mar. 16, 1985, D.C. Law 5-179, § 4, 32 DCR 764; July 18, 2008, D.C. Law 17-184, § 2(a), 55 DCR 6101; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-353, § 238(a), 56 DCR 1117.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 40-1403.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 50-1604.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 17-184, in the introductory language and par. (3)(E), substituted “District Department of Transportation” for “Department of Public Works”.

D.C. Law 17-353 validated a previously made technical correction in par. (3)(E).


§ 50–1604. District of Columbia Bicycle Advisory Council.

(a) There is established a District of Columbia Bicycle Advisory Council (the “Council”).

(b)(1) The Council shall be composed of 17 members appointed as follows:

(A) The bicycle coordinator of the Office of Bicycle Transportation and Safety of the District Department of Transportation, as established in § 50-1603;

(B) The Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department or his or her designee;

(C) The Director of the Office of Planning or his or her designee;

(D) The Director of the Department of Parks and Recreation or his or her designee; and

(E) Thirteen community representatives, with each member of the Council of the District of Columbia appointing one representative.

(2)(A) Each community representative shall be a resident of the District with a demonstrated interest in bicycling.

(B) A chairperson shall be elected from among the 13 community representatives and shall serve for a term of 2 years.

(c)(1) The community members shall be appointed for a term of 3 years, with initial staggered appointments of 4 members appointed for 1 year, 5 members appointed for 2 years, and 4 members appointed for 3 years. The members to serve the 1-year term, the members to serve the 2-year term, and the members to serve the 3-year term shall be determined by lot at the 1st meeting of the Council.

(2) Vacancies shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment to the position that became vacant. Community members who are appointed to fill vacancies that occur before the expiration of a community member’s full term shall serve only the unexpired portion of the community member’s term.

(c-1) The District Department of Transportation shall provide the Bicycle Advisory Council with an annual operating budget, which shall include funds to maintain a website, where the Bicycle Advisory Council shall provide a public listing of members, meeting notices, and meeting minutes.

(d) The purpose of the Council shall be to serve as the advisory body to the Mayor, Council of the District of Columbia, and District agencies on matters pertaining to bicycling in the District and to make recommendations to the bicycle coordinator on the budget and focus of the Comprehensive Bicycle Transportation and Safety Program.


(Mar. 16, 1985, D.C. Law 5-179, § 5, 32 DCR 764; Oct. 26, 2001, D.C. Law 14-42, § 28, 48 DCR 7612; Mar. 13, 2004, D.C. Law 15-105, § 26(f), 51 DCR 881; July 18, 2008, D.C. Law 17-184, § 2(b), 55 DCR 6101; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-353, § 238(b), 56 DCR 1117; Mar. 3, 2010, D.C. Law 18-111, § 6062, 57 DCR 181; Dec. 24, 2013, D.C. Law 20-61, § 6052, 60 DCR 12472; Oct. 22, 2015, D.C. Law 21-36, § 6072, 62 DCR 10905.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 40-1404.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 14-42, in subsec. (d), inserted “, Council of the District of Columbia” before “and District”.

D.C. Law 15-105, in subsec. (d), validated a previously made technical correction.

D.C. Law 17-184 rewrote subsec. (b).

D.C. Law 17-353 validated previously made technical corrections in subsec. (b).

D.C. Law 18-111 added subsec. (c-1).

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 20-61 rewrote (b)(2)(B).

The 2015 amendment by D.C. Law 21-36 designated the existing text of (c) as (c)(1); and added (c)(2).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 28 of Technical Amendments Emergency Act of 2001 (D.C. Act 14-108, August 3, 2001, 48 DCR 7622).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 6062 of Fiscal Year 2010 Budget Support Second Emergency Act of 2009 (D.C. Act 18-207, October 15, 2009, 56 DCR 8234).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of § 6062 of Fiscal Year Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2009 (D.C. Act 18-260, January 4, 2010, 57 DCR 345).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 6052 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-130, July 30, 2013, 60 DCR 11384, 20 DCSTAT 1827).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 6052 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-204, October 17, 2013, 60 DCR 15341, 20 DCSTAT 2311).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 6072 of the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2015 (D.C. Act 21-127, July 27, 2015, 62 DCR 10201).

Short Title

Section 6051 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that Subtitle F of Title VI of the act may be cited as the “Bicycle Advisory Council Amendment Act of 2013”.

References in Text

Pursuant to Mayor’s Order 2000-20, the agency formerly known as the “Department of Recreation” renamed the “Department of Recreation and Parks” shall be known as the “Department of Parks and Recreation.”

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-61: Section 11001 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that, except as otherwise provided, the act shall apply as of October 1, 2013.


§ 50–1605. Helmet use requirements.

(a) It shall be unlawful for any person under 16 years of age to operate or to be a passenger on a bicycle or any attachment to a bicycle on a public roadway, public bicycle path or other right-of-way, unless that person wears a protective helmet of good fit, fastened securely upon the head with the straps of the helmet.

(b) It shall be unlawful for any parent or legal guardian of a child under 16 years of age to knowingly permit the child to operate or to be a passenger on a bicycle on a public roadway, public bicycle path, or other public right-of-way, unless at all times when the child is so engaged, he or she wears a protective bicycle helmet of good fit, fastened securely upon the head with the straps of the helmet.

(c) The parents or legal guardians of any child under 16 years of age found in violation of this section shall be liable for paying a fine of $25. However, the fine shall be suspended for:

(1) First time violators; or

(2) Violators who subsequent to the violation, but prior to the imposition of fine, purchase a helmet of the type required by this subchapter.

(d) The penalties provided for pursuant to subsection (c) of this section shall not be enforced until 90 days after May 23, 2000.

(e) Any helmet sold or rented, or offered for sale or rent, for use by operators and passengers of bicycles shall be conspicuously labeled in accordance with the standard described in § 50-1609(5).

(f)(1) A person regularly engaged in the business of renting bicycles shall require each person seeking to rent a bicycle to provide his or her signature, either on the rental form, or on a separate form containing each of the following:

(A) A written explanation of the provisions of this subchapter and the penalties for violations; and

(B) A statement concerning whether a person under 16 years of age will operate a bicycle in an area where a helmet is required.

(2) A person regularly engaged in the business of renting bicycles shall provide a properly fitted helmet to any person who will operate the bicycle in an area requiring a helmet, if the person does not already have a helmet in his or her possession. A reasonable fee may be charged for the helmet rental.

(3) A person regularly engaged in the business of selling or renting bicycles who complies with this subchapter shall not be liable in a civil action for damages for any physical injuries sustained by a bicycle operator or passenger as a result of the operator’s passenger’s failure to wear a helmet or to wear a properly fitted or fastened helmet in violation of this subchapter.


(Mar. 16, 1985, D.C. Law 5-179, § 6, 32 DCR 764; as added May 23, 2000, D.C. Law 13-112, § 2(b), 47 DCR 1985.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 50-1612.

Cross References

General helmet use law, see § 50-1651 et seq.


§ 50–1606. Contributory negligence.

Failure to wear a helmet as described in this subchapter shall not be considered as evidence of either negligence per se, contributory negligence, or assumption of the risk in any civil suit arising out of any accident in which a person under 16 years of age is injured. Failure to wear a helmet shall not be a admissible as evidence in the trial of any civil action, nor in any way diminish or reduce the damages recoverable in such action.


(Mar. 16, 1985, D.C. Law 5-179, § 7, 32 DCR 764; as added May 23, 2000, D.C. Law 13-112, § 2(b), 47 DCR 1985.)


§ 50–1607. Child safety helmet education program.

(a) Within 60 days of May 23, 2000, the District Department of Transportation, in conjunction with the Metropolitan Police Department and District of Columbia Public Schools, shall develop and implement a public education program to educate adults and children under 16 years of age on the requirements of this subchapter and the importance of properly wearing bicycle safety helmets.

(b) By October 1, of each year, the District Department of Transportation shall provide the Council of the District of Columbia, Committee on Public Works and the Environment, or a successor committee, a report summarizing the public education activities completed during the previous fiscal year, along with any statistics collected regarding bicycle accidents and injuries during the preceding fiscal year.


(Mar. 16, 1985, D.C. Law 5-179, § 8, 32 DCR 764; as added May 23, 2000, D.C. Law 13-112, § 2(b), 47 DCR 1985; July 18, 2008, D.C. Law 17-184, § 2(c), 55 DCR 6101; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-353, § 238(c), 56 DCR 1117.)

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 17-184, in subsecs. (a) and (b), substituted “District Department of Transportation” for “Department of Public Works”.

D.C. Law 17-353 validated a previously made technical correction in subsec. (b).


§ 50–1608. Child safety helmet assistance program.

The District Department of Transportation shall adopt a helmet assistance program which shall include grants and discount programs to assist indigent parents and guardians of children under 16 years of age in obtaining safety helmets.


(Mar. 16, 1985, D.C. Law 5-179, § 9, 32 DCR 764; as added May 23, 2000, D.C. Law 13-112, § 2(b), 47 DCR 1985; July 18, 2008, D.C. Law 17-184, § 2(d), 55 DCR 6101; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-353, § 238(d), 56 DCR 1117.)

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 17-184 substituted “District Department of Transportation” for “District of Columbia Department of Public Works”.

D.C. Law 17-353 validated a previously made technical correction.


§ 50–1609. Definitions.

For the purposes of this subchapter the term:

(1) “Bicycle” means a human-powered vehicle with wheels designed to transport, by pedaling, one or more persons seated on one or more saddle seats on its frame. “Bicycle” also includes a human-powered vehicle, and any attachment to the vehicle designed to transport by pedaling when the vehicle is used on a public roadway, public bicycle path or other public right-of-way. The term “Bicycle” also includes a “tricycle,” which is a 3-wheeled human-powered vehicle designed for use as a toy by a single child under 6 years of age, the seat of which is no more than 2 feet from ground level.

(1A) “Identification number” means a numbered stamp, sticker, or other label or plate issued for a bicycle for the purpose of identifying the bicycle as having been registered, including any sticker or label provided by the National Bike Registry or a registry established by the Mayor for the purpose of bicycle registration. The term “identification number” shall also include a serial number that is originally inscribed or affixed by the manufacturer to a bicycle frame or a bicycle part for the purpose of identification.

(1B) “National Bike Registry” means the nationwide computer database for the registration of bicycles that is an official licensee of the National Crime Prevention Council and is accessible at www.nationalbikeregistry.com or at 1-800-848-BIKE.

(2) “Operator” means a person under 16 years of age who travels on a bicycle seated on a saddle seat from which that person is intended to and can pedal the bicycle.

(3) “Other public right-of-way” means any right of way other than a public roadway or public bicycle path that is under the jurisdiction and control of the District of Columbia and is designed for use and used by vehicular or pedestrian traffic.

(4) “Passenger” means any person, under 16 years of age, who travels on a bicycle in any manner except as an operator.

(5) “Protective bicycle helmet” means a piece of headgear which meets or exceeds the impact standards for protective bicycle helmets set by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) or the Snell Memorial Foundation’s standards for protective headgear or the American Society for testing and Materials (ASTM) for use in bicycling.

(6) “Public bicycle path” means a right-of-way under the jurisdiction and control of the District of Columbia for use primarily by bicycles and pedestrians.

(7) “Public roadway” means a right-of-way under the jurisdiction and control of the District of Columbia for use primarily by motor vehicles.


(Mar. 16, 1985, D.C. Law 5-179, § 10, 32 DCR 764; as added May 23, 2000, D.C. Law 13-112, § 2(b), 47 DCR 1985; May 1, 2008, D.C. Law 17-149, § 2(b), 55 DCR 1272.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 22-3234 and § 50-1605.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 17-149 added pars. (1A) and (1B).


Part B. Bicycle Registration; Rental Rate Information.

§ 50–1611. Bicycle registration.

(a)(1) No person shall be required to register a bicycle in the District of Columbia.

(2) A person wishing to register a bicycle to permit the Metropolitan Police Department to track or locate the bicycle if it becomes lost or stolen may do so through the National Bike Registry or a District bicycle registry established by the Mayor in accordance with this section.

(b)(1) The Mayor may establish, through rulemaking, another bicycle registry to serve as a supplement to or replacement for the National Bike Registry.

(2) Any bicycle registry established by the Mayor shall be web-based and easily utilized by any bicycle purchaser or owner, or law enforcement official.

(c)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, the Metropolitan Police Department shall check the identification number of any bicycle recovered by the Metropolitan Police Department against the National Bike Registry and any other bicycle registry established by the Mayor, and shall notify the registered owner of a recovered bicycle.

(2) If the Mayor replaces the National Bike Registry with another bicycle registry pursuant to subsection (b)(1) of this section, the Metropolitan Police Department shall be required to check the identification number of any bicycle recovered by the Metropolitan Police only against the registry established by the Mayor.

(d) As of June 1, 2008, a person regularly engaged in the business of selling bicycles shall inform each purchaser, in writing, how to voluntarily register the purchaser’s bicycle in accordance with this section. For the purposes of this subsection, the term “bicycle” shall exclude tricycles.

(e) The Mayor, pursuant to subchapter I of Chapter 5 of Title 2, may issue rules to implement the provisions of this section.


(Mar. 16, 1985, D.C. Law 5-179, § 201; as added May 1, 2008, D.C. Law 17-149, § 2(c), 55 DCR 1272.)


§ 50–1612. Bicycle rental information.

(a) As of June 1, 2008, a person regularly engaged in the business of renting bicycles shall require each person seeking to rent a bicycle to provide his or her signature on the rental form, or on a separate form, containing each of the following:

(1) A statement of rental bearing the names and addresses of the lessor and lessee;

(2) The rate at which the bicycle is being rented; and

(3) The time for which the bicycle is being rented.

(b) The form used to meet the requirements of subsection (a) of this section may be the same form used to meet the requirements of § 50-1605(f).


(Mar. 16, 1985, D.C. Law 5-179, § 202; as added May 1, 2008, D.C. Law 17-149, § 2(c), 55 DCR 1272.)


Subchapter I-A. Access to Justice for Bicyclists.

§ 50–1621. Civil action for bicyclists.

(a) An individual who, while riding a bicycle, is the victim of an assault or battery by a motorist, and prevails in a civil action for such assault or battery, shall be entitled to:

(1) Statutory damages of $1,000 or actual damages, whichever is greater;

(2) Reasonable attorney’s fees and costs; provided, that the total amount of damages is less than $10,000; and

(3) Any other relief available under the law.

(b) For the purposes of this section, the term “motorist” means an individual who operates a motor vehicle, as defined in § 50-2301.02(5A).


(Apr. 20, 2013, D.C. Law 19-264, § 2, 60 DCR 1346.)


Subchapter II. Commercial Bicycle Operators.

§ 50–1631. Definitions.

For purposes of this subchapter, the term:

(1) “Commercial bicycle operator” means an individual at least 16 years of age who receives financial compensation for the delivery or pick-up of goods or services by bicycle as a substantial part of his or her business or earnings, as defined by the Mayor in rules developed pursuant to § 50-1632(d)(3).

(2) “Courier company” means any firm, partnership, company, corporation, or organization operating within the District of Columbia that employs, compensates, utilizes, or contracts with a commercial bicycle operator.

(3) “Mayor” means the Mayor of the District of Columbia.


(Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-97, § 2, 35 DCR 1045.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 40-1411.

Short Title

Short title: The first section of D.C. Law 7-97 provided: “That this act may be cited as the ‘Commercial Bicycle Operators Licensing Act of 1987’.”


§ 50–1632. Licensing; violations; identification numbers.

(a) Except as provided in subsection (e) of this section, no commercial bicycle operator shall operate within the District of Columbia without a license issued by the Mayor. A commercial bicycle operator shall pass a bicycle safety test developed by the Mayor in order to receive a commercial bicycle operator’s license.

(b) It shall be a violation of this subchapter for a commercial bicycle operator licensed under this section to:

(1) Fail to pay a license fee not to exceed $50 per year;

(2) Fail to carry a valid commercial bicycle operator’s permit that shall include a photo identification listing the commercial bicycle operator’s name, address, permit number, and any other information required by the Mayor pursuant to subsection (d)(3) of this section;

(3) Fail to display, in a manner visible from the rear, a valid commercial bicycle operator identification number issued by the Mayor pursuant to subsection (d)(2) of this section and, if employed by, compensated by, utilized by, or under contract to a courier company, the name and telephone number of the courier company, or if not employed by, compensated by, utilized by, or under contract to a courier company, the commercial bicycle operator’s telephone number and address;

(4) Use a commercial bicycle operator’s permit or identification number assigned to someone other than the commercial bicycle operator; or

(5) Violate any other requirement created by rule related to commercial bicycle operators.

(c) After notice and an opportunity to be heard, the commercial bicycle license shall not be renewed or shall be suspended or revoked upon the accumulation of a substantial number of bicycle traffic law violations and unpaid fines as determined by rules promulgated by the Mayor.

(d) The Mayor shall:

(1) Issue a commercial bicycle operator’s permit to each commercial bicycle operator who has passed the required bicycle safety test and paid the license fee required under § 50-1632(b)(1);

(2) Issue commercial bicycle operator identification numbers upon request to courier companies and to commercial bicycle operators not employed by, compensated by, utilized by, or under contract to a courier company;

(3) Issue rules to implement the provisions of this subchapter pursuant to subchapter I of Chapter 5 of Title 2, within 120 days of March 29, 1988; and

(4) Develop a public education program to inform the public of the requirements of this subchapter.

(e) Commercial bicycle operators operating in the District of Columbia as of March 29, 1988 shall obtain a license from the Mayor within 180 days of March 29, 1988.


(Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-97, § 3, 35 DCR 1045.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 40-1412.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 50-1631 and § 50-1634.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority pursuant to D.C. Law 7-97, “Commercial Bicycle Operators Licensing Act of 1987.”, see Mayor’s Order 88-174, July 29, 1988.


§ 50–1633. Courier company responsibility.

No courier company shall employ, compensate, utilize, or contract with a commercial bicycle operator who does not have a valid commercial bicycle operator’s permit and a properly registered bicycle.


(Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-97, § 4, 35 DCR 1045.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 40-1413.


§ 50–1634. Enforcement.

(a) The Mayor shall promulgate a schedule of civil fines not to exceed $50 for violations of the provisions of this subchapter and rules promulgated pursuant to § 50-1632(d)(3).

(b) The proposed schedule of fines shall be submitted to the Council of the District of Columbia within 60 days of March 29, 1988 for approval, in whole or in part, by resolution. Nothing in this subchapter shall affect any requirements imposed upon the Mayor by subchapter I of Chapter 5 of Title 2.


(Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-97, § 5, 35 DCR 1045.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 40-1414.

Editor's Notes

Approval of proposed schedule of fines: Pursuant to Resolution 8-150, the “Commercial Bicycle Operators Licensing Act Schedule of Fines Approval Resolution of 1989”, effective November 21, 1989, the Council approved the proposed schedule of fines for violations of the provisions of the Commercial Bicycle Operators Licensing Act of 1987.


Subchapter III. Bicycle Parking.

§ 50–1641.01. Definitions.

For the purposes of this subchapter, the term “bicycle parking space” means a device or enclosure, located within a building or installation, or conveniently adjacent thereto, for securing a bicycle that is easily accessible, clearly visible and so located as to be reasonably secure from theft or vandalism.


(Feb. 2, 2008, D.C. Law 17-103, § 2, 54 DCR 12213.)

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of Authority—Bicycle Commuter and Parking Expansion Amendment Act of 2007, see Mayor’s Order 2011-149, September 6, 2011 ( 58 DCR 8085).


§ 50–1641.02. Bicycle parking space requirements.

(a) A bicycle parking space shall conform to the bike parking rack standard established by the District Department of Transportation, or be of such design that will enable the frame to be supported in 2 places, and allow for both wheels of a bicycle to be secured with ease by use of a U-lock, cable lock, or other security device. Exceptions to these standards may be approved by the Mayor.

(b) Bicycle parking spaces installed prior to February 2, 2008, that do not meet the requirements of this subchapter shall be permitted until one year after February 2, 2008.


(Feb. 2, 2008, D.C. Law 17-103, § 3, 54 DCR 12213.)


§ 50–1641.03. John A. Wilson Building bicycle parking requirements.

(a) Notwithstanding any other law or regulation, the Council shall increase the number of public bicycle parking spaces at the John A. Wilson Building.

(b) The total number of public bicycle parking spaces provided at the John A. Wilson Building shall be no less than 16; provided, that:

(1) Design, purchase, and installation of the public bicycle parking spaces shall be done in coordination with the District Department of Transportation (“DDOT”) from funds either already allocated to DDOT in fiscal year 2008 or already allocated to the Council in fiscal year 2008 for the maintenance of the John A. Wilson Building;

(2) The design of the bicycle parking spaces shall be consistent with the architectural style and beauty of the John A. Wilson Building; and

(3) At least one bicycle parking space shall be located adjacent to the public entrance on Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., if this is determined to be consistent with historic preservation guidelines and National Park Service regulations.


(Feb. 2, 2008, D.C. Law 17-103, § 4, 54 DCR 12213.)

Editor's Notes

Section 11 of D.C. Law 17-103 provided that this section shall be subject to appropriation.


§ 50–1641.04. Mayor’s report on bicycle parking at District government buildings.

(a) Within 180 days of February 2, 2008, the Mayor shall prepare and make public a report on the availability of bicycle parking spaces at buildings occupied by the District government, including office buildings occupied by District government agencies, public school buildings, public libraries and branches, recreation centers, and parks.

(b) The report shall include:

(1) The current number of parking spaces available for automobiles;

(2) The current number of parking spaces available for bicycles;

(3) The percentage of available bicycle parking spaces to available automobile parking spaces;

(4) A strategic plan to provide no less than a number of bicycle parking spaces that is equivalent to 10% of the available automobile parking spaces;

(5) A plan for providing a larger number of bicycle parking spaces at locations where it is warranted by current demand;

(6) An evaluation of bicycle travel lanes that lead riders to the facility or park; and

(7) A detailed report of the bicycle parking plans for the baseball stadium for the Washington Nationals.


(Feb. 2, 2008, D.C. Law 17-103, § 5, 54 DCR 12213.)


§ 50–1641.05. Residential building bicycle parking requirements.

(a)(1) A residential building owner shall provide secure bicycle parking spaces for all existing residential buildings with 8 or more units.

(2)(A) A residential building owner shall provide a reasonable number of bicycle parking spaces, as determined by the Mayor, for all existing residential buildings within 30 days of one or more residents’ written requests, unless an extension due to hardship is granted by the Mayor.

(B) Where complaints of noncompliance have been filed with the Mayor by one or more residents, the Mayor shall facilitate an agreement between the parties and determine the number of bicycle parking spaces that shall be provided.

(C) The bicycle parking spaces shall be provided within 30 days of the Mayor’s determination, unless an extension due to hardship is granted by the Mayor.

(3) Where it can be demonstrated that providing bicycle parking spaces required under this subsection is not physically practical, that undue economic hardship would result from strict compliance with the regulation, or that the nature of the building use is such that bicycle parking spaces would not be used, the Mayor may grant, upon written application of the owner of the building, an appropriate exemption or reduced level of compliance. In such cases, a certificate documenting the exemption or reduced level of compliance shall be issued to the building owner.

(b)(1) A residential building owner shall provide at least one secure bicycle parking space for each 3 residential units for all new residential buildings and substantially rehabilitated buildings with 8 or more units.

(2) Where it can be demonstrated in a substantially rehabilitated building that providing bicycle parking spaces is not physically practical, that undue economic hardship would result from strict compliance with the regulation, or that the nature of the building use is such that bicycle parking would not be used, the Mayor may grant, upon written application of the owner of the building, an appropriate exemption or reduced level of compliance. In such cases, a certificate documenting the exemption or reduced level of compliance shall be issued to the building owner.

(3) For the purposes of this subsection, “substantially rehabilitated” means any improvement to or renovation of a residential building for which the improvement or renovation equals or exceeds 50% of the assessed value of the building before the rehabilitation. Existing bicycle parking spaces before rehabilitation shall be considered in calculating the total number of required parking spaces under this subsection.

(c) The Mayor shall identify categories that are eligible for appropriate exemption or reduced level of compliance. The categories include “elderly housing,” “assisted living facilities,” and “nursing homes” as defined in § 44-501.

(d) Any residential buildings that have been exempted from the regulation due to the nature of the use of the building shall provide a minimum number of bicycle parking spaces equal to at least 5% of the number of people employed at the building.


(Feb. 2, 2008, D.C. Law 17-103, § 6, 54 DCR 12213; Apr. 8, 2011, D.C. Law 18-365, § 2(a), 58 DCR 979.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 50-1641.07a.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 18-365, in subsec. (a)(2)(A), substituted “spaces, as determined by the Mayor,” for “spaces”.


§ 50–1641.06. Increased bicycle parking spaces for office, retail, and service uses.

(a) An owner of a building with office, retail, or service use shall provide a minimum number of bicycle parking spaces at least equal to 5% of the number of automobile parking spaces provided for the building.

(b) If the utilization of the minimum number of bicycle parking spaces is reaching 90% or higher during peak usage periods, the owner of a building with office, retail, or service use shall provide bicycle parking spaces at least equal to 10% of the number of automobile parking spaces provided for the building.

(c) Where it can be demonstrated that providing bicycle parking spaces is not physically practical, that undue economic hardship would result from strict compliance with the regulation, or that the nature of the building use is such that bicycle parking spaces would not be used, the Mayor may grant, upon written application of the owner of the building, an appropriate exemption or reduced level of compliance. In such cases, a certificate documenting the exemption or reduced level of compliance shall be issued to the building owner.


(Feb. 2, 2008, D.C. Law 17-103, § 7, 54 DCR 12213.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 50-1641.07a.


§ 50–1641.07. Rules; Council review.

(a) Within 90 days of April 8, 2011, the Mayor, pursuant to subchapter I of Chapter 5 of Title 2 [§ 2-501 et seq.], shall issue rules to implement the provisions of this subchapter.

(b) All rules promulgated under this subchapter shall be submitted to the Council for review and approval.


(Feb. 2, 2008, D.C. Law 17-103, § 8, 54 DCR 12213; Apr. 8, 2011, D.C. Law 18-365, § 2(b), 58 DCR 979.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 50-1641.07a.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 18-365 substituted “Within 90 days of April 8, 2011” for “Within 90 days of February 2, 2008”.


§ 50–1641.07a. Enforcement.

(a) A violation of this subchapter or the rules issued under authority of this subchapter shall be a civil infraction for the purposes of Chapter 18 of Title 2 [§ 2-1801.01 et seq.].

(b) Civil fines, penalties, and fees may be imposed as sanctions for an infraction of § 50-1641.05 or § 50-1641.06, or any rule promulgated under authority of this subchapter, pursuant to Chapter 18 of Title 2 [§ 2-1801.01 et seq.].

(c) Six months after April 8, 2001, the Mayor may begin enforcement of § 50-1641.06(a).

(d) Six months after the effective date of the rules issued pursuant to § 50-1641.07, the Mayor may begin enforcement of §§ 50-1641.05 and 50-1641.06(b) and (c).

(e) Revenues collected from enforcement described in subsections (c) and (d) of this section shall be dedicated to any costs associated with conducting such enforcement.


(Feb. 2, 2008, D.C. Law 17-103, § 8a; as added Apr. 8, 2011, D.C. Law 18-365, § 2(c), 58 DCR 979.)


§ 50–1641.08. Applicability.

Rules promulgated pursuant to this subchapter shall apply to existing, substantially rehabilitated, and new residential, retail, office, and service buildings 6 months after February 2, 2008.


(Feb. 2, 2008, D.C. Law 17-103, § 9, 54 DCR 12213.)


§ 50–1641.09. Zoning regulations.

Nothing in this subchapter shall supplant any requirements of the Zoning Regulations.


(Feb. 2, 2008, D.C. Law 17-103, § 10, 54 DCR 12213.)