E-bikes parked in the grass next to a bike path


What is an E-Bike?

An e-bike is an “electrical assisted bicycle” equipped with fully operable pedals and an electric motor not exceeding 750 watts of power. E-bikes have been rising in popularity over the past few years for both recreational and commuter cyclists. The motor assist makes bicycling more accessible to a wider audience, and the ability to carry heavier loads and go longer distances with less effort than a traditional bicycle makes e-bikes a viable alternative to driving for many Coloradans.

As more e-bikes hit the roads and trails, some safety concerns have risen due to the relatively high operating speeds of e-bikes compared to traditional human-powered bicycles. Because of these safety concerns, many municipalities restrict the use of e-bikes on shared trails and paths. Lakewood’s e-bike restrictions are outlined below.

E-Bikes on Lakewood Trails

Electric bikes typically fall into one of three classes, depending on speed thresholds and the type of motor assist:

Class 1: Pedal assist only, with motor assistance up to 20 mph. (After top speed is reached, the motor will stop helping.)

Class 2: Pedal assist or throttle power up to 20 mph. (Bike can operate with or without cyclist pedaling.)

Class 3: Pedal assist only, with motor assistance up to 28 mph.

In the state of Colorado, e-bikes are classified as bicycles (as opposed to motorized vehicles) and have the same rights of the road as traditional bicycles. Class 1 e-bikes are allowed on all Colorado State Park trails where bicycles are permitted.

In Lakewood parks and Jefferson County Open Spaces, Class 1 e-bikes are allowed on natural surface trails and Class 1 and Class 2 e-bikes are allowed on paved trails. Class 3 e-bikes are not permitted on Lakewood paths or trails. The maximum speed for all bicycles on city park paths is 15 mph.

 E-bike graphics of e-bike classes  

E-Bike Rebates and Financial Incentives

Lakewood does not currently have a citywide rebate or financial incentive program for residents to purchase e-bikes, but the Colorado Energy Office launched a statewide e-bike tax credit on April 1, 2024. With this tax credit, all Colorado residents can now receive a $450 discount on a qualifying e-bike purchase at the point of sale from participating retailers across the state. Visit the state’s E-Bike Tax Credit website to learn more and find a list of participating bike shops.