Frequently Asked Questions

The Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) has set an ambitious vision to make cycling a safe and affordable option for more Chicagoans. In addition to connecting bike networks and increasing the number of low stress and protected bike lane miles in the city, CDOT will facilitate more residents cycling through a bike distribution program. CDOT will distribute 5,000 bicycles, as well as safety and maintenance equipment by by 2026 to age and income eligible residents.

  • Chicago Residents 14 and older (those under 18 will need a Guardian’s signature on a liability waiver); AND
  • Have a household income at or below 100% of the Area Median Income for Chicago (see chart); AND
  • Do not already own a bicycle; AND
  • Residents that face higher mobility hardship (see map on attached page); OR
  • Participants in CDOT 2023 mobility programming (Green Corps and income qualifying Learn to Ride participants)
Household income at or below the Area Median Income by Household Size for Chicago

Area Median Income by Household Size*


















*Income limits are for the Chicago-Naperville-Joliet, IL HUD Metro FMR Area.

Due to overwhelming demand in 2022 (over 19,000 applications), a lottery will be run with the existing applications to determine the majority of bike recipients for 2023. Bikes will also be distributed to 2023 participants in CDOT mobility programming (Green Corps and Learn to Ride courses). Selected recipients will be contacted on the steps to take to pick up their bike and equipment. 

    • The application window is currently closed due to overwhelming demand. Please join the CDOT newsletter to find out when the application will reopen in the coming years. You can join the newsletter at

The City is currently seeking a partner to develop and adaptive bike distribution program as a part of Bike Chicago.

  • City/hybrid bikes that enable an upright riding position
  • Helmet – a standard adjustable road bike helmet
  • Lock – a standard U lock
  • Bell – a standard bike bell
  • Lights – front and rear usb chargeable lights
  • Chain lubricant – all weather chain lubricant

If you qualify for a bike and gear, the City will notify you of the pick-up location and timeframes. 

  • If you are a participant in the Green Corps Programs, the bike and accompanying equipment will be distributed through the program.
  • If you participate in a CDOT Learn to Ride program, staff will coordinate with you to pick up a bike and equipment at a City distribution site.

The process will be done via self-attestation with recipients agreeing that any false representations constitute and act of fraud, which may result in termination and repayment of any and all benefits received through the program.

Yes. Recipients will be required to sign a liability waiver. Recipients under 18 will need to have a guardian present who will sign the form on their behalf.

Please contact the CDOT team at and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Mobility Hardship Index

Residents who reside in Community Areas shaded orange and red have lower levels of mobility.

Click on the map for a larger map view.

Mobility Hardship Index