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NACTO Releases New Guidance on Bike Share Station Placement

Apr 21, 2016

Provides a Framework for Cities to Increase Access, Make Streets Safer

Getting station placement right is integral to the success of a bike share system. NACTO’s new guide allows planners and community groups to help design and advocate for better, easy-to-access bike share station locations and safer streets.


For Immediate Release
April 21, 2016

Press Contact:
Alexander Engel
[email protected]

Bike share has rapidly emerged as a convenient, low-cost transportation option that can not only bolster public transit usage and increase cycling, but also address multiple street design needs simultaneously. Well-planned bike share stations can improve the pedestrian experience, help reduce traffic fatalities, and reduce inequity in cities’ transportation networks. To support cities across the country working towards all of these goals, NACTO has released the NACTO Bike Share Siting Guide, which highlights best practices in station placement and design.

Getting station placement right is integral to the success of a bike share system. Planners and community groups alike can use this new guidance to help design and advocate for better, easy-to-access bike share station locations and safer streets.

Complete with photos from systems around North America, as well as helpful diagrams and clear technical illustrations, the Guide provides a framework for a new, evolving industry. Developed collaboratively with city transportation departments, bike share experts, planners, outreach specialists, system operators, and equipment vendors from a variety of North American cities, the techniques recommended by the Guide have been proven in real-world practice. The Guide provides concrete options for communities looking to increase mobility options and improve street safety in their neighborhoods. This key reference tool can be used to enhance the community engagement and outreach efforts that are essential to the planning of any bike share system.

Getting bike share station placement right is good for more than just bike share users. As cities work to address decades-long issues of equity in street design (low-income people in particular have a disproportionate risk of death or injury caused by traffic crashes), effective bike share station placement and planning can help close the gap by increasing pedestrian visibility at intersections, providing pedestrian refuge areas, protecting bike lanes and pedestrian plazas, and extending the reach of transit.

“Location, location, location! Getting bike share station placement right propels success,” said Seleta Reynolds, General Manager of the Los Angeles Department of Transportation and NACTO President. “The new NACTO Bike Share Siting Guide helps cities learn from one another when it comes to station design and placement.”

“Bike share doesn’t plan itself,” said Jim Kenney, Mayor of Philadelphia. “From the community members who help choose the sites, to the planners and engineers who make sure they’re safe, bike share is about sharing knowledge as much as it is about sharing bikes. The NACTO Bike Share Siting Guide is a playbook that features what we’ve learned here in Philadelphia and in our peer cities about making bike share work for our communities. We’re proud to be an inspiration to other cities around the country.”

“Vigorous community engagement is key to bike share success,” said Tonnetta Graham, President of Strawberry Mansion Community Development Corporation. “As shown in Philadelphia, having community members actively involved in station placement and design helped align the needs and goals of bike share and our community. Empower our concerned citizens and they will be ambassadors of bike share throughout the community.”

“The new NACTO Bike Share Siting Guide is an excellent resource for cities as they plan their bike share systems. It is a targeted tool for bike share station placement and creating site drawings,” said Bob Burns, President of B-Cycle. “This guide provides clear discussion, great images and a variety of site drawings that clearly show how bike share equipment can be used to enhance the user experience in cities everywhere. B-Cycle is proud to recommend the NACTO Bike Share Siting Guide.”

“We commend NACTO for its thorough research and comprehensive approach to this complex issue,” said Jay Walder, President and CEO of Motivate. “As the nation’s largest bike share operator, Motivate works closely with cities on a wide variety of issues, including how and where to site bike share stations. The NACTO guide is a great resource and helps illustrate options used in cities across North America.”

“NACTO’s Bike Share Siting Guide is a highly useful resource for bike share planners and operators, providing clear standards for how and where to install bike share stations,” said Nicole Freedman, President of the North American Bike Share Association (NABSA). “This smart guidance will help cities create easily accessible bike share networks, and better streets for all. NABSA fully endorses the NACTO Bike Share Siting Guide.”

The Guide is a complement to NACTO’s successful Urban Bikeway Design Guide and Urban Street Design Guide, which have set the bar for successful 21st-century multi-modal streets, as well as NACTO’s Equity Practitioners’ Paper series, which highlights best practices for cities aiming to address equity issues while introducing or expanding their bike share systems.

The NACTO Bike Share Siting Guide is available in print and as a free download at The Guide is part of a collection of resources created in collaboration with the Better Bike Share Partnership. It is made possible by a grant from The JPB Foundation to further the conversation around equity in bike share.



NACTO is an association of 45 major North American cities formed to exchange transportation ideas, insights, and practices and cooperatively approach national transportation issues.

Member cities include Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Denver, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, Portland, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, and Washington D.C. Affiliate member cities include Arlington VA, Boulder, Burlington, Cambridge, Chattanooga, El Paso, Fort Lauderdale, Hoboken, Indianapolis, Louisville, Madison, Memphis, Miami Beach, Montreal, Oakland, Palo Alto, Puebla, Salt Lake City, Santa Monica, Somerville, Toronto, Vancouver BC, Vancouver WA, and Ventura.

About the NACTO Bike Share Initiative

Bike share has rapidly emerged as a new transportation option that can bolster public transit usage and increase cycling, with systems in in over 50 U.S. cities. As cities and towns around the country focus on sustainability and equity, bike share systems can play an important role in safety, accessibility, and livability efforts by making it easier for people to get around. To facilitate conversations between peer cities, NACTO holds roundtables, workshops, and webinars and conducts research on best practices and challenges for the growing bike share movement.

NACTO is a member of the Better Bike Share Partnership, a JPB funded collaboration between The City of Philadelphia, Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia, NACTO, and PeopleForBikes, to build equitable and replicable bike share systems.

For more information about NACTO’s Bike Share Program, contact Kate Fillin-Yeh, NACTO Bike Share Program Director, at [email protected].

Links and Resources

Download the press release (PDF) >
Download the NACTO Bike Share Station Siting Guide (PDF) >
Order a print copy >