Bad local biking ordinances become enforceable in 2018


The state legislature recently enacted bills that raise speed limits in Michigan and decrease penalties for doing so. That wasn’t smart but that’s not all.

Many Michigan cities have bad local bicycling laws. We’ve documented them both here and here, though some may have been removed since these articles were written. Now fortunately nearly none of these are enforceable since current state law (MCL 257.606┬áSection 4) requires local authorities to post these local bicycle ordinances on signs.

That requirement goes away on January 5th, 2018.

Why? Because the that speeding bill we mentioned earlier incorrectly amended 257.606. It removed items from Section (1) and failed to update Section (4) which referenced those items. It appears to only affect the enforcement of local bicycle ordinances (posted signs are no longer required) and truck routes (posted signs are now required.)

The Detroit Greenways Coalition worked with Detroit City Council to remove its outdated local ordinances. Other cities have not. We expect the Coalition will help get this state law corrected. It would also be a good opportunity to remove local authorities from requiring bicycle registrations and licenses — and fees.

Not that you will, but you can potentially get tickets for the following bicycle violations starting January 5th:


  • Youth under 12 cannot ride on any street or alley.
  • Youth between 12 and 17 can ride on a street or alley but need an operator’s license from the chief of police and a note from their parents or guardian.
  • All bicyclists are not allowed to ride in roadway is there is a bike lane or on a sidepath present.
  • All bicyclists that ride in Hamtramck must register their bicycles with the chief of police. Non-residents can be registered in an adjacent city.

Highland Park

  • All bicyclists are not allowed to ride in roadway is there is a bike lane or on a sidepath present
  • Bicycles must have bells or similar audible devices.

Dearborn, Eastpointe, Ferndale, Grosse Pointe require all bicyclists riding in their city to have bike licenses. Non-residents can be registered in their city instead except for Eastpointe. In Grosse Pointe, non-residents can pass through legally without a registered bike if “on a substantially continuous journey.”

Warren and Grosse Point Park do not appear to have any local bicycle ordinances!

Well, that’s not quite correct. Warren specifically prohibits bicyclists from carrying machine guns.

“No person shall possess on their person, on a bicycle, on a motorcycle or motor bike, or in the passenger compartment of any vehicle, any machine gun, sawed-off shotgun, sling shot, sand club, sand bag, switch-blade knife, stiletto, dagger, dirk, razor, knife having a blade over three (3) inches in length, metal knuckles, martial arts weapon, gun, handgun, pistol, revolver, rifle, shotgun, BB gun, pellet gun, air gun, imitation pistol, or any dangerous or deadly weapon or instrument”


Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply