Transportation Association of Canada
keeping our highways ‘up to speed’
With the technical expertise, Transportation Association of Canada paves the road ahead
The Transportation Association of Canada (TAC) is a national not-for-profit association that focuses on road and highway infrastructure and urban transportation. With a long history of providing technical resources for transportation practitioners in Canada, the Association is evolving along with the industry. New players and industries are joining traditional stakeholder members; high-tech companies, software developers, telecom providers, insurance specialists, professional service firms, and others are bringing their much-needed knowledge and expertise to help tackle modern transportation issues and projects.
Originally formed in 1914 as the Dominion Good Roads Association, a key purpose was to promote the construction of a superior national road network. Legend has it the motto at the time was “Get out of the mud”.
In the 100+ years since, members’ needs have changed and TAC has worked to meet those needs. Since the mid-1950s, the focus has been providing specialized technical resources for transportation professionals on the planning, design, construction, management, operations and maintenance of roads, highways and urban transportation infrastructure systems and services.
TAC provides a forum for sharing ideas and information, building knowledge and pooling resources toward the vision of “transportation that makes Canada safe, healthy and prosperous”.
Who is TAC?
500+ organizations, including all the federal, provincial and territorial departments of transportation, hundreds of municipalities and businesses like contractors, consulting firms and suppliers, and academic institutions and associations, are TAC’s members.
All employees of member organizations can benefit from their TAC membership. Benefits include preferred pricing on publications, conference and online training registrations, access to industry communications and information, borrowing privileges and priority service from TAC’s Transportation Library, and a job posting service.
Members Come Together at TAC
People often say that the greatest benefit of TAC membership is the opportunity to participate on TAC’s councils and committees. Those groups – numbering well over 30 – drive the technical work of the Association in infrastructure and asset management, environment and climate change, safety, mobility, technology, and workforce development. That collective, known as “TAC Volunteers”, works together to identify emerging and critical issues in transportation and develop technical resources to help address them. About 900 individuals are involved, making an extensive network of professionals with interests and expertise in transportation. That number has been growing steadily in recent years as people find that active participation allows them to build their own networks, share knowledge and learn from others.
TAC can and does address myriad issues in the transportation sector – driven by members’ needs and interests. Priorities are determined by the issues that are important to TAC members and the challenges they’re tackling. The engagement of a broad cross-section of members and stakeholders helps ensure that TAC products and services are useful and meet current needs in the industry.
TAC hosts a variety of forums, both online and in person, where members can connect and share information. Emerging issues are discussed at council and committee meetings, roundtables keep participants up to date on the latest trends and developments in transportation, and webinars raise awareness of interesting projects, practices, and business innovations.
Projects geared at developing tools and resources to address transportation challenges are conducted collaboratively. Results are shared in a variety of formats to reach a wide audience. TAC’s technical publications for transportation practitioners are nationally-recognized specialized references. Training courses provide learning opportunities for developing professionals. Other communications are intended for people with broader transportation interests.
Each fall, TAC’s annual conference is the largest national transportation-themed event in Canada, drawing together thought-leaders, decision-makers, experts and practitioners. A very popular part of the conference is the exhibition, where transportation and technology-related products and services are showcased and strategic alliances are forged among buyers, entrepreneurs and practitioners.
Transportation in the Years Ahead
This is an exciting time to be in the transportation sector – there is a lot of growth and change happening at a rapid pace. Innovative developments and technology applications are having profound impacts on demand for, and construction, operation, maintenance and delivery of infrastructure and services. Intelligent systems, automated and connected vehicles, drones, de-carbonization efforts and other exciting initiatives are changing transportation as we know it. Governments across the country are investing to build and maintain our transportation systems and supply chains. Public and private sector players are working together and opportunities to improve safety, mobility, sustainability, resilience, equity and efficiency are burgeoning.
TAC itself is transforming along with the sector. It recently added a Technology Council and several related committees to support information exchange and problem-solving related to intelligent transportation systems, connected and automated vehicles, vehicle electrification, data management, cybersecurity and smart cities. TAC member organizations who are leaders and innovators in using new technology have the opportunity to share their work and create new best practices through TAC’s network. The future holds great promise as stakeholders across all sectors work together to evolve transportation in support of Canada’s social and economic goals.
TAC’s membership is open and inclusive. The Association’s work relies on – and is made better by – having a broad range of perspectives and skill sets at its tables. Businesses and organizations that offer products and services relevant to roads, highway and urban transportation infrastructure, and operations should not hesitate to join TAC. There’s no better place to meet others in the field – customers, clients and colleagues – to understand needs and share solutions. Ultimately, thanks to the collaboration of experts through TAC, Canadians benefit from real improvements in our transportation systems.
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AT A GLANCE
Transportation Association of Canada
What: The association that oversees and offers the technical expertise to keep transportation links efficient
Where: Ottawa, Ontario