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Local ordinances on sidewalk riding and more: Monterey County cities and unincorporated areas

Bicycling Monterey provides info about Bicycling on Sidewalks: Misconceptions and Advisories, which includes info on crosswalks, and “What Pedestrians and Bicyclists Want Each Other to Know.” It has a 90-second audio by Mari too.

As that post says, California law leaves sidewalk riding to local jurisdiction.

Where to find ordinances about bicycles on sidewalks, plus any other local bike-related regulations, for Carmel, Del Rey Oaks, Gonzales, Greenfield, King City, Marina, Monterey, Pacific Grove, Salinas, Sand City, Seaside, and Soledad—and for unincorporated Monterey County?

They’re in Tips for Bicycling Monterey County‘s section on “Riding Skills, Safety, and Bike Laws,” under topic #20: Local ordinances about bicycles on sidewalks, plus other local bike-related ordinances.” Bicycling Monterey’s focus there is sidewalks, although also included are, e.g., that some local cities require bicycles be licensed. For any additions or updates, check with local police departments or other local officials. 

Knowing local ordinances can help you avoid a ticket. See an example below, regarding the City of Greenfield.
For a related post, see “Confusion abounds: Biking on sidewalks, in Carmel and elsewhere in Monterey County” (short link: https://bit.ly/CarmelConfusion).

Alvarado Mall couple by Adventures

About the photo above: Curious where that couple was biking? They are on Alvarado Mall, the brick passageway that connects Custom House Plaza to Portola Plaza. See more in “Where the plazas are in Monterey–and how to preserve their charm.”

Photo below: Shopping-by-bike in Greenfield

Greenfield bikes

In “Riding Skills, Safety, and Bike Laws,” the subheading “Sidewalk riding: City of Greenfield” includes Greenfield municipal code related to bicycling. It refers to Greenfield’s section 10.24 (bicycles) and also to 10.28 (skateboards and other human-powered devices).

Why does this matter? Here’s just one reason: As Rachel Zentz’s 8/10/16 Greenfield Police Log report in the The Salinas Californian listed, a man was recently cited in Greenfield for riding a bicycle on a sidewalk.

Does that mean sidewalk riding is prohibited in Greenfield? No. He was cited only because he was bicycling on a sidewalk in the business district, which is prohibited by Greenfield code 10.28.030 (To find that code, and others, on the Greenfield Municipal Code web page, click the + sign for Title 10 Vehicles and Traffic, which will then display:

– Title 10 VEHICLES AND TRAFFIC
+ Chapter 10.04 TRAFFIC REGULATIONS
+ Chapter 10.08 SPEED LIMITS
+ Chapter 10.12 PARKING, REMOVAL OF VEHICLES
+ Chapter 10.16 ABANDONED VEHICLES
+ Chapter 10.20 PARADES, ASSEMBLIES AND SOUND TRUCKS
+ Chapter 10.24 BICYCLES
+ Chapter 10.28 SKATEBOARDS AND OTHER HUMAN-POWERED DEVICES

By the way, Bicycling Monterey reached out to the City of Greenfield in August to encourage that the City edit their website so people don’t miss that restriction about bicycling on a sidewalk in a business district. It was not in the “Bicycles” section but instead was only under the “Skateboards and other human-powered devices” section, where some people might overlook it.

Also in the “Skateboards…” section, where it could easily be missed, is that it’s not permitted to ride a bicycle after dark on any sidewalk.

The City staffer that Bicycling Monterey spoke with was courteous and interested in resolving this concern. They understood it would be helpful to make it easier for people bicycling Greenfield to find all bike-related codes on the city’s website. However, as of October 25, 2016, the website had not yet been edited; chances are the request is buried on a busy city staffer’s to-do list. We can relate to overflowing to-do lists, and since Bicycling Monterey is a volunteer gig for us, we could use your help: advocate for bicycling by following up on that request. How? Contact the City of Greenfield. Request that their webmaster add to the page “Chapter 10.24 BICYCLES” the following text: “For additional City of Greenfield codes that apply to bicycling, refer to Chapter 10.28 SKATEBOARDS AND OTHER HUMAN-POWERED DEVICES.”

Another way to help others avoid a ticket is to share a link to this post, or print and share a flier: Be Cool, Be Safe – bike law summary – A flier in Spanish is also available: Leyes de ciclismo de CA – Laws for bicyclists in CA (Spanish, English) – Summary

Be Cool Be Safe bike law summary

Seaside - young biker with moms in crosswalk

“What about crosswalks?”

To learn more about sidewalk riding…

Listen to Bicycling Monterey’s 90-second audio, and read related info as well, in “Bicycling on Sidewalks: Misconceptions and Advisories.” Included there also is info on crosswalks, along with what people who walk and people who bike want each other to know.

Questions? Feel free to bit.ly/ContactMari.

Special thanks to Sergeant M. Rice of Greenfield Police Department for teaming up with Bicycling Monterey to strengthen educational outreach about City of Greenfield, CA bicycle ordinances. This isn’t the first time that Greenfield PD has teamed up with Bicycling Monterey to support people who bike; click here for another example.

I appreciate that in Monterey County, our local police departments and sheriff’s office are generally very savvy about bike laws, so you are unlikely to find people on bikes incorrectly cited, as sometimes happens elsewhere. See Constables of the Peace: Cops on bicycles in Monterey County for more examples of the bike friendliness of Monterey County law enforcement.

More tips about bicycling Greenfield

See Bike Greenfield, plus South County HER Helmet Thursdays spots

Hey, those bikes need a better place to park!

Maybe you saw the three bicycles by the store in the Greenfield photo above and thought: they could use a better place to be parked. Indeed they could. And Transportation Agency for Monterey County can provide in 2017 (as part of a three-year program that began in 2015) free bike racks, free skateboard racks, free bike lockers, and free bike maintenance stations. To learn more, click here.

If you find information on the Bicycling Monterey website helpful,

consider making a contribution.

Click here for ways to contribute and FAQs.

Boy in Vista Verde t with Greenfield PD - fitted for helmet - 2012

 

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