1-page overview plan

Transportation Association of Canada

Transportation that makes Canada safe, healthy and prosperous


Working together to share ideas, build knowledge, promote best practices, foster leadership, and encourage bold transportation solutions


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Who we are

The Transportation Association of Canada (TAC) is a not-for- profit, national technical association that focusses on road and highway infrastructure and urban transportation. Our 500 corporate members include all levels of governments, private sector companies, academic institutions, and other associations. TAC provides a neutral, non-partisan forum for those organizations, and their thousands of staff, to come together to share ideas and information, build knowledge, and pool resources in addressing transportation issues and challenges.

TAC celebrated its centennial in 2014 and, with over 100 years of history in the transportation sector, is continuing its important work to develop publications identifying best practices and encouraging harmonization of those practices across jurisdictions. While TAC does not set standards, it is a principle source of guidelines for planning, design, construction, management, operation, and maintenance of road, highway, and urban transportation infrastructure systems and services.

Vision — Focus Areas



Safety in Canada’s transportation network is a priority for TAC and its members. The rate of deaths and injuries of road users – whether they be in a vehicle or in a work zone, riding a bike, motorcycle or mobility device, on public transit or on foot – is a public health issue that is both devastating and costly. Transportation professionals are tackling the problem from all angles, considering engineering, education and enforcement and adopting safe systems approaches to plan, design, and build infrastructure and deliver transportation services. Fundamentally, most every TAC technical guideline offers means, directly or indirectly, to improve and ensure transportation safety.



Mobility is a paradigm that stretches transportation beyond its traditional limits. TAC members recognize the importance of considering mobility as a service, for both goods and people. Seamless, integrated multi-modal transportation is the long- sought mobility solution. Greater attention is being paid to the integration of land use planning and transportation, recognizing the potential that offers to improve mobility and enhance urban form. Increasing the use of active modes of transportation, like walking and cycling, offers benefits for both individual and environmental health. Planning, designing and building ‘complete streets,’ which accommodate all modes of transportation for users of all ages and abilities, is expected to improve the overall health of our communities. Tools and guidelines are needed to support transportation professionals as they incorporate these kinds of approaches in their work.


Infrastructure and Asset Management

Transportation is an enabler, critically important to support Canada’s social, economic and environmental goals. The transportation network relies on safe, secure, solid infrastructure that can be efficiently planned, built, maintained and operated. The challenge of securing long- term sustainable infrastructure funding is an ongoing concern, given the fiscal realities most regions are facing. Despite recent significant investments by governments and the private sector in roads, bridges and public transit, need for more persists. Alternative financing models, such as public- private partnerships, offer opportunities to fund projects and share the risks and benefits of investing in transportation. Asset management programs, which help ensure those investments are made in the right projects at the right time, are being implemented in more and more jurisdictions. Many jurisdictions are also looking for ways to include not only condition data in their asset management analyses, but also social, environmental and innovation factors.


Environment and Climate Change

Transportation and the environment have a complex and critical relationship. To protect the environment while also providing for the mobility of goods and people, transportation-related works must take into consideration many factors, including striving to conserve natural resources, prevent pollution and protect the ecology. Furthermore, transportation is known to generate significant greenhouse gasses, which affect the world’s climate. It is also a sector that faces serious challenges to ensure that infrastructure is resilient to the impacts of climate change, including unpredictable weather and storm events. Sharing research about, and experience with, environmental practices, mitigation and adaptation initiatives is important to ensure Canada’s transportation network continues to provide the level of service the Canadian economy and people require every day.



In all aspects of modern life, technology is changing rapidly. In transportation, innovation and technological developments may have potentially profound impacts on demand for, and construction, operation, maintenance and delivery of, infrastructure and services. The future will look different than the present as intelligent systems, automated and connected vehicles, unmanned aerial vehicles, and electrification initiatives change transportation as we know it. Connectivity also means vast amounts of data are generated that offer potential to improve transportation, but processing and analyzing the data to make them useful to decision-makers and understood by the public, is a challenge to address. Opportunities abound to evolve transportation for the benefit of all Canadians.


Workforce Development

The transportation profession, like many others, is experiencing demographic changes, including significant retirement rates at senior levels in the public and private sectors. As a result, priority is being put on identifying and implementing good recruitment and retention practices, succession planning, knowledge management and leadership development. At the same time, the transportation profession is seeing changes whereby new and sometimes non-traditional skills are needed by those who work with evolving technologies or in multi-disciplinary environments. TAC members are interested in building and strengthening the sector and its workforce by attracting people to the profession, expanding learning and career growth, and developing leaders that will take the industry into the future.

Mission — Strategic Priorities


Collaborate and Communicate

Canada’s transportation sector is evolving quickly due to technological advances, demographic changes and other societal changes. Our member organizations benefit from working together to address these challenges. They have asked TAC to maintain the strength of our volunteer structure and the annual TAC Conference and Exhibition, while also enhancing TAC’s profile with new audiences, and being more proactive in working with other national organizations.


To provide a neutral forum for the exchange of ideas and the discussion of technical transportation issues.

Objectives Actions

Support TAC’s volunteer committee structure

We will continue to support and encourage the positive contributions of TAC’s committees as they discuss pressing issues.

We will provide opportunities for TAC members to share information and work together to address those issues.

Deliver annual conference and exhibition

The conference and exhibition is an important event in TAC’s annual calendar. We will look for ways to improve and make them appealing and accessible to participants, particularly younger professionals.

Encourage communication among and engagement with TAC members

We will aim to enhance the way we reach out to TAC’s membership using a variety of media. We will provide platforms that facilitate members’ communication with the Association and each other.

Build TAC’s profile with new audiences

We will encourage our committees to tackle important and emerging transportation sector issues and assist in communicating these efforts with diverse audiences on multiple platforms. Reaching out to younger professionals will be part of these efforts.

Proactively work with other organizations who share common interests

TAC will reach out to other national organizations with shared interests to find synergies and identify initiatives on which we can collaborate.


Build Knowledge

TAC has been working for over a century to help its members improve Canada’s roads and urban transportation systems. We must continue to support our member organizations in identifying and monitoring emerging challenges and new technologies, and developing national guidelines and syntheses of practices to deal with those challenges. This includes supporting our committees as they undertake projects.


To develop references and tools, including guidelines and syntheses of practices, to address research and practical needs in the highway, road and urban transportation sectors.

Objectives Actions

Develop national guidelines, syntheses of practices, reports and briefings

TAC will support its councils, task forces and committees as they determine what national guidelines are needed, identify and promote best practices, and prepare reports and briefings.

Address emerging and critical issues, including technology

We will be proactive in identifying and monitoring emerging trends to ensure that issues are addressed in a timely fashion.

Manage projects recommended and supported by TAC’s members and volunteers

We will continue to manage the projects prioritized by TAC’s committees, and seek means to streamline our processes and improve final products.


Disseminate Information

TAC continues to assemble our members to facilitate their collaboration in developing reliable, cutting edge transportation sector information. We share this information using a variety of media including: national guidelines, syntheses of practices, reports and briefings; the TAC library; and a range of communications channels such as our newsletters, website, media releases, and emails to members.


To be the preeminent source of transportation materials for Canadian practitioners.

Objectives Actions

Promote TAC’s national guidelines, syntheses of practices, reports and briefings

TAC will continue to ensure the relevance and technical excellence of these products and promote them widely to our members and other stakeholders.

Grow the library collection and offer technical information services

We will continue to augment the library with relevant technical information, and to offer technical services to assist members in retrieving and using information.

Communicate about emerging and critical issues, including technology

We will help our committees communicate about these issues and their impact on our transportation system.


Develop our People

The Canadian transportation sector has an aging demographic and faces a wave of retirements in the coming years that could result in a significant loss of knowledge. Our members need to attract a younger workforce possessing the skills to tackle complex challenges in an industry affected by significant technological advances. We also need to create learning programs that meet our members’ needs, and to help develop the leaders of tomorrow’s transportation sector.


To foster leadership and contribute to the availability and technical currency of transportation professionals in Canada.

Objectives Actions

Offer learning opportunities through seminars, webinars and other events

TAC will regularly review these products to ensure they are meeting current industry needs and add new events as required.

Recognize outstanding contributions to transportation in Canada

We will raise the profile of transportation by celebrating the outstanding contributions of practitioners and projects in the sector.

Engage young professionals in TAC

We will find ways to engage the best and brightest young professionals in TAC’s activities.

Support the TAC Foundation

We will provide support to the TAC Foundation to promote the important work that it does.


Manage Effectively, Now and For the Future

TAC’s Secretariat houses staff who support the work of the Association, its Board of Directors and volunteer structure. The Secretariat works to ensure the organization’s long-term sustainability by engaging with and recruiting transportation professionals as TAC volunteers, and identifying the resources required to deliver on the Association’s priorities and work plan.


To ensure the sustainability of the Association, with respect to finances, membership, volunteers and staff.

Objectives Actions

Provide support for the governance of the Association

We will be proactive in performing our secretariat role to help ensure the Association’s long-term relevance.

Ensure the current and future financial sustainability of TAC and its products and services

TAC will monitor the revenues and expenses associated with the delivery of its products and services and take steps to ensure financial sustainability as required.

Maximize the engagement of professionals as volunteers in TAC

We will encourage TAC members to participate as volunteers by communicating these opportunities and their benefits.

Seek opportunities to enhance the secretariat’s resources to support members and customers

We will encourage the development of TAC staff to ensure the secretariat keeps abreast of advancements and maintains an appropriate complement of technical and other skills to support members and volunteers. We will work to identify sustainable ways of enhancing the services we provide.

Annually review strategic priorities and refresh the operational plan

We will review our strategic priorities regularly and refresh the Association’s operational plan annually. The strategic and operational plans will be dynamic and roll forward with a five year horizon.



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