Frequently Asked Questions
Below are some of the most frequently asked questions we receive. If you have a question, and don't see an answer below, please use the feedback form to contact us.
- Where can I report a street sweeping request or other bike lane maintenance issues?
513-591-6000 is the City of Cincinnati's Customer Service Hotline to request street sweeping, debris removal, and report potholes, etc. You can also use this online form: Customer Service Form
- Where do I report other types of bike hazards (i.e. dangerous intersections, traffic pinch points, drainage grates, chronic speeding areas, and other hazards requiring more substantial "fixes"?
Contact the Bicycle Transportation Program.
- Can bicyclists still use the roadway where there is a bike lane?
Cyclists are still permitted to travel in the regular vehicle travel lanes even when a bike lane is present. When making a left turn, a bicyclist should make the turn from the left lane and not the bike lane. Cyclists should signal and make sure it is clear before moving into the vehicle travel lane. Motorists should always be aware that cyclists may merge to avoid an obstacle in the bicycle lane or may need to move to the appropriate lane to make a left hand turn or pass a slower moving vehicle (i.e. garbage trucks, stopped buses, slower bicyclists).
- Why aren't the bike lanes all connected to one another? Why are they only a few blocks long on some streets?
Many areas don't currently have enough room on the street for bike lanes. This is typically because of a combination of a high demand for on-street parking, and the inability to either eliminate a travel lane, or narrow the width of existing travel lanes. It is often also prohibitively expensive to widen the roadway. We are doing our best to incorporate new bike lanes into upcoming street rehabilitation or improvement projects, but some streets will simply always be too narrow to add bike lanes. Many arterial streets have peak hour restrictions for on-street car parking. Striped bike lanes aren't possible in these segments, so we try to provide wider curb lanes (14 feet wide) to accommodate bicyclists in these roadways.
It may seem piecemeal, but by adding bike lanes where we can over time (and supplementing them with sharrows, wide curb lanes, or share-the-road signs where we can't) we will eventually create a well-connected network. Even if a bike lane won't take you all the way to your final destination, a segment of bike lane will make your trip safer and more enjoyable. Studies indicate that a little assistance is a big factor in encouraging people to bicycle. Small segments of bike lane can provide an opportunity for someone to ride their bike when they might otherwise not.
- I've seen new pavement markings on streets in Cincinnati. The marking is a bicycle with two arrows above it. What does it mean?
What you're seeing is a shared lane pavement marking, also known as a "sharrow", now in use in 73 US communities. They serve as a reminder that motorists and cyclists are to share the travel lane, and they show cyclists where to position themselves with respect to parked cars. Right now we're studying them as part of a Federal Highway Administration evaluation process. For more information about sharrows, check out the sharrow page.
- Do I have to have to pay extra or have a permit to put my bike on the bus?
Metro and TANK installed bike racks on the front of all of their buses. Folding bikes are the only bikes allowed in the bus. There are no additional fees or permits required when putting your bike on the bus rack. Contact Metro for more details at 513-621-4455. Or, download the Sorta brochure, or the TANK brochure.
- Where can I park my bike in Cincinnati?
Bikes can be parked at any of the numerous bike racks around the City, and may be parked on sidewalks with some restrictions. Where the sidewalk is narrow, take extra care not to block pedestrian ways. Park parallel to the curb. Maintain access to traffic push buttons and cross walks, utility boxes, flower pots and the entrances to businesses. Please avoid locking to trees, hand railings, newspaper boxes, outdoor cafe railings and other private property. Download the Downtown bike rack map.
- How do I request a bike rack in front of my business/workplace/dentist's office/etc.?
A small portion of the City of Cincinnati Bicycle Transportation Program’s annual budget is allocated to installing free City owned and maintained bike racks within the City's rights-of-way (City-owned land that typically consists of the street and sidewalk). Bike rack requests are evaluated on a first come-first serve basis. Factors that are considered when evaluating bike rack requests include but are not limited to: funding availability, other existing nearby bicycle parking options, demonstrated need and site specific criteria (proximity to existing utility facilities, street furniture, bus stops, on-street parking/loading zones, etc.). For more information about requesting a bike rack in the City right-of-way, please contact us via the bike rack request form.
Since the bike rack program is limited to the City's right-of-way, any requests received for installing bike racks on private property or at non-city owned/operated facilities will not be evaluated. In cases where you believe a bike rack is warranted on private property (libraries, schools, colleges, big box retail, etc.), the Bicycle Program staff encourage you to contact the particular property owner and/or building manager to let them know that you are a customer but you can't find safe, convenient bicycle parking.