How do I get a bike rack?

We get a lot of questions about bike parking. Dero, a company that makes racks, has a really great summary of how to do bike parking right. You can read it here:

If you are wondering how to how to have bike parking installed somewhere, here’s a quick breakdown:

To request bike parking in public space:

  • In Alexandria, use this web tool.
  • In Arlington, use this form.
  • In Fairfax County, call (703) 877-5600
  • In Montgomery County, use this form. Find more info on this page
  • Prince Georges County does not have a way to request bike parking, but some of the cities and towns within the county do. We recommend calling your city hall directly.
  • In DC:
    1. If the space is in a Business Improvement District, start by calling your BID.
    2. If you’re not in a BID or your BID doesn’t help you, submit a request through 311 for Bicycle Services. Include a a photo and detailed description of the location.
    3. If you are a business and want to install your own racks in public space, you’ll need to purchase your own racks (be sure they comply with DDOT’s design guidelines), get a permit for each installation (like any other public space construction/installation), and find a contractor with the necessary tools (a hammer drill) to do the installation.

WABA repaired & installed rack

Regulations and guidelines for bike parking in private space (which includes things like store parking lots and apartment buildings) vary across jurisdictions.

  • DC – Regulations and requirementsBike Parking Guide (PDF)
  • Arlington – Bike Parking Specifications (PDF)
  • Alexandria – Bike Parking Standards
  • Fairfax County – Bike parking guidelines are written and in the process of being approved. Check here for updates.
  • Montgomery County – Bike parking requirements depend on size and zoning. They are described in section 6-2.4.C of the recently approved zoning code (very large PDF). Bike parking standards are in section 6-2.6 of the same document.
  • Prince Georges County’s bike parking requirements and design guidelines are in section 27A-707 of the Zoning Code, which you can find here.  Note: because of the structure of the site, we can’t link directly to the relevant section. You’ll need to click through the table of contents (Zoning > 27A > 707), and the actual Zoning Code is provided as a Microsoft Word file. :/

Historical Note: In 2013, WABA was the contractor that installed bike racks for DDOT. This is no longer the case.

Bike Parking for the Presidential Inauguration

For the inauguration, DDOT and goDCgo will be providing a large bike parking area at 16th and I streets NW.  WABA will not be providing a staffed bike valet this year, as we have done in the past. The 2008 valet was enabled by significant sponsor support and donations of bike racks and equipment that are not available to us this year without substantial cost. We are pleased to see the District providing a significant increase in bike parking for this major event, and we are advocating for NPS to adopt regulations—as have been adopted in San Francisco—requiring organizers of major events to ensure adequate bike parking is provided. From goDCgo, for personal bikes:
DDOT and goDCgo will setup a bike parking area at 16th and I Streets, NW with racks to hold hundreds of bikes. Bike owners are responsible for parking and locking their own bikes, and availability is on a first-come, first-served basis. Please note, this area will be for personal bikes only, not Capital Bikeshare bikes.
And for Capital Bikeshare:
Two bike corrals will be set up for Capital Bikeshare bikes from 7:00am – 5:00pm at Farragut Square at 17th and K Streets, NW and the USDA building at 12th Street and Independence Avenue, SW. You will be guaranteed a place to drop off your Capital Bikeshare bike but they cannot guarantee a bike for everyone for return trips. All six Capital Bikeshare stations along the parade route will be temporarily removed and placed out of service. The stations will be removed between the Wednesday and Friday before Inauguration and will be out of service for about a week before being reinstalled.

Don’t forget to bring a lock!