Bike Parking Planning Code
Requirements for Commercial, Residential, Parking Garages, and City Buildings
The Board of Supervisors Land Use & Economic Development Committee unanimously approved updates to the Planning Code requirements for bike parking in new and renovated buildings. Following unanimous passage at the SF Planning Commission and the Land Use Committee, these changes move forward for final adoption to the Board of Supervisors in late July. After years of advocacy from the SF Bicycle Coalition, the Planning Department brought forward changes to require more bike parking in both residential and commercial buildings, and a slew of other ways to improve the security of bike parking all across the city.
The legislation is a very large document, but below is a short summary of the proposed changes:
- Increases number of required bike parking spots in new buildings from about 2% (or less) to a minimum of 5%.
- Clarifies Categories: Instead of simply labeling all buildings as “Residential” or “Commercial,” the new code includes variety of requirements based on type of use. Numbers vary for SRO’s, Schools, Stadiums, Industrial/Commercial/Office uses and more.
- Clear Design Standards: Provides developers with clear guidelines on best types of racks and specifies space/width for aisles and entranceways.
- Additional Triggers: Planning Code is only for new buildings or other buildings that have a specified change called a ‘trigger.’ In the existing code, only Commercial Buildings with a renovation of $1 million or greater are triggered to comply with the Bike Parking Code. In this new legislation, the addition of a dwelling unit or adding car parking would also be ‘triggers.’
- Options for outdoor sidewalk parking: New construction that doesn’t want to install outdoor bike racks for visitors themselves can simply pay $400 per spot to SFMTA to fund additional sidewalk racks.
- Required Car Parking can be Converted to Bike Parking: Any landlord or developer who would prefer to use space for bike parking instead of mandatory car parking may do so – which is currently prohibited.
- Updated Enforcement for City-Owned and Leased Buildings: Changes and strengthens how the city surveys and enforces bike parking requirements for City-owned and leased buildings. This will help add more bike parking to libraries, the Hall of Justice, and other buildings.
Current Planning Code
San Francisco requires secure bicycle parking in all new commercial, new residential, parking garages and city buildings. The Bicycle Parking Requirements provided below are a detailed summary of San Francisco Planning code.
San Francisco has two classes of bicycle parking. Class 2 is a standard bike rack you can lock to. Class 1 is defined as, “Facilities which protect the entire bicycle, its components and accessories against theft and against inclement weather, including wind-driven rain. Examples of this type of facility include (1) lockers, (2) check-in facilities, (3) monitored parking, (4) restricted access parking, and (5) personal storage.” (1)
If a Commercial Building is built or undergoes a major renovation ($1 Million or more), the owner must provide at least 3 bicycle parking spaces, or more depending on gross square footage (GSF). (2)
|Professional Service: 10,000 -20,000 GSF or Retail: 25,000-50,000 GSF||3 bicycle spaces (Class 1, 2 or both)|
|Professional Service: 20,000 -50,000 GSF or Retail: 50,000-100,000 GSF||6 bicycle spaces (Class 1, 2 or both)|
|Professional Service: 50,000 -100,000 GSF or Retail: 100,000+ GSF||12 bicycle spaces (Class 1, 2 or both)|
San Francisco requires residential properties with 4 or more units* to provide Class 1 bike parking free of charge to residents, beyond allowing residents to keep their bikes inside their unit. (3)
|For projects up to 50 dwelling units||1 bicycle parking for every 2 units (Class 1)|
|For projects over 50 dwelling units||25 spaces + 1 for every 4 dwelling units over 50 (Class 1)|
|Group housing in all Districts||1 space for every 3 bedrooms (Class 1)|
|Dwelling units dedicated to senior citizens or physically disabled persons||None required|
This planning code is only applicable to residential buildings who build an additional residential unit or is newly constructed after the date of implementation in 2006.
In all City-owned and privately-owned parking garages (but not parking lots), the owner and operator is required to provide at least 6 bicycle parking spots. (4)
|General Standard||Minimum of 6 spaces (Class1, 2 or both)|
|Garage with 120-500 auto spaces||1 bike space for every 20 automobiles (Class 1, 2 or both)|
|Garage with 500+ auto spaces||25 bike spaces +1 for every 40 auto spaces over 500, up to a max of 50 bicycle spaces (Class1, 2 or both)|
All buildings leased or owned by the city are required to have bike parking. The number of spots is dependent on how many employees work in the building, but require both Class 1 and Class 2 parking. (5)
|Bldgs with 1-20 employees||2 bicycle spaces (Class 1)|
|Bldgs with 21-50 employees||4 bicycle spaces (Class 1)|
|Bldgs with 51-300 employees||equal to 5% of the number of employees in the Bldg, but not less than 5 spaces (Class 1)|
|Bldgs with 300+ employees||equal to 3% of the number of employees in the bldg, but not less than 16 spaces (Class 1)|
|Bldg with 1-40 employees||2 bicycle spaces (Class 2)|
|Bldg with 41-50 employees||4 bicycle spaces (Class 2)|
|Bldg with 51-100 employees||6 bicycle spaces (Class 2)|
|Bldg with 100+ employees||8 bicycle spaces with at least 50% shall be covered (Class 2)|