Nichols Hills Require Bicycle Licenses

Walter J. posted this interesting little legal tidbit about the bicycle licensing requirements of Nichols Hills to the OBS mailing list:

Sec. 22-221.  Impoundment.

Any bicycle found upon any of the streets, sidewalks, alleys, parks, or public ways, or upon private property not under the control of the owner of the bicycle, and not licensed as herein required, or which does not otherwise comply with the provisions hereof or state law, shall be impounded until compliance is made. Abandoned bicycles shall be seized and impounded for safe keeping by the police department.

(Code 1989, § 20-105)

Sec. 22-222.  License.

(a)   It shall be unlawful and an offense for any person to operate or use a bicycle with a wheel diameter of 20 inches or more, propelled wholly or in part by muscular power, upon any of the streets, sidewalks, alleys, parks, or public ways of the city without first obtaining a license therefor and having the license placed thereon as hereinafter provided.

(b)   Such persons as the city manager may designate are hereby authorized and directed to issue bicycle licenses and attach the license to the bicycle on the upright portion of the frame below the seat or in such other form and manner as the city manager may prescribe. At the time of issuance of the license, the person issuing the license shall record the date of the issuance of each license, the name and address of the person to whom the same is issued, and the license number, together with a description of the bicycle licensed. There shall be no fee or charge for the issuance of such licenses.

(c)   In the event the license becomes obliterated, mutilated, removed or for any other reason, its numbers and lettering cannot be read, the owner of the license shall be required to obtain a duplicate license.

(Code 1989, §§ 20-100–20-102)


I have no idea how often this law is enforced if ever.  However, since punishment for an unlicensed bike is having it impounded, I may have to rethink my little trips to the Farmer’s Market on Thursdays.  Anyone ever been asked for their license?

UPDATE: 07/06/2010

The license can be obtained at no cost from the Nichols Hills Public Works Department at

1009 NW 75th.


One response to “Nichols Hills Require Bicycle Licenses”

  1. “(a) It shall be unlawful and an offense for any person to operate or use a bicycle with a wheel diameter of 20 inches or more”

    I’d get a bike with 16″ wheels, which is rather small for me at 5’9″ tall, and than lengthen the seat and handle bar posts so I could still sit upright. But being that the licenses are free I wouldn’t mind getting one cause they’re not trying to find another way to get more money from me.

    At least these licenses are free unlike other places. Because the licenses are free they can truly say they’re not trying to make money with the program. Some states are looking at licensing bikes as a way to make money for the city. But the money should go toward bike related things. Like more bike lanes, developing more trails for riders that commute and want to avoid traffic, bicycle awareness programs to educate bikers and motorists etc etc. It should be a crime to send the money to the “General Fund” or use it for anything other than biking.

    I’m looking at adding a gas motor to my bike so I can use it as an alternative to my car. A bike with a motor gets even better mileage than a scooter!! The bike weighs less and is more areodynamic than a scooter so it’s more efficient on gas.

    Of course I’ll look at electric too. But the advantage of gas is that if I run low on gas when out and about I can stop at any gas station. Whereas with an electric motor if I run out of juice and are quite some distance from home it will be a long ride back!!

    Than there’s also the pedal assist hub wheel which helps with hills and such. But those have distance limits like the electric motors.

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