Bikes May Use Sidewalk

Hamilton Avenue at Highway 17, Campbell, California.

Bikes May Use Sidewalk

THis is near the Fry’s Electronics store in Campbell. The city of Campbell prohibits bike riding on sidewalks (Campbell Municipal Code 10.48.120), though I guess this sign means there’s an exception along this portion of Hamilton.

And get a load of Campbell Municipal Code 10.48.170:

The chief of police of the city as well as any member of the police department thereof may impound and retain possession of any bicycle operated, parked or used in violation of any of the provisions of this chapter, and may retain possession of any such bicycle until the license provided for herein is obtained by the owner of the bicycle, criminal proceedings for the violation resulting in the impounding have been terminated and the judgment satisfied, and all charges and expenses incurred by reason of the impounding, including but not limited to storage charges, have been paid by the owner of the bicycle. The police department and members thereof are authorized to store any bicycles impounded in garages or other suitable places and to incur storage charges therefor. Such storage charges shall be paid by the owner of the bicycle.


  1. Imagine the outrage from motorists if police impounded their vehicles for minor traffic violations. This statute seems discriminatory, just on its face.

  2. =v= There are places around the Bay Area where signs said, “Bikes MUST Wse Sidewalk” (in violation of state law and in exception to local ordinances), until activists had them changed.

  3. How about “Bikes May Use Full Lane”? (A sign which is now in the official national standard of traffic control devices.)

  4. Hi Chris,

    Your point is well taken. California doesn’t impound motor vehicles for minor traffic violations, but the police do have authority to impound a vehicle driven by somebody with a suspended license, a revoked license, or does not have a valid license, and I’ve seen it happen.

  5. If other jurisdictions follow the judicial logic of the recent Reed Bates/ChipSeal conviction, cyclist who continue to ride on Hamilton Ave. in Campbell can be convicted of reckless driving, if traffic is heavy.

  6. @Wolfman: Traffic on Hamilton is *always* heavy 🙂 Average Daily Traffic here is 64,000 vehicles per day. A lot of people bike on the sidewalk, but there are plenty (including me) who also bike with the other traffic.

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