September 10


Is NACTO Better Than ITE?

By Mike Spack

September 10, 2015


The National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO) came on the scene in 2012 and I really like their website. The website is easy to navigate and it has great graphics from their Urban Bikeway Design Guide and their Urban Street Design Guide.  They also give away part of the content of each design guide away for free on the website.

This is in pretty stark contrast to the Institute of Transportation Engineers’ website, whose design is dated and hard to navigate.  I hope this will change in the near future (I was told a major overhaul was in the “works” a couple of years ago).  ITE has a tremendous amount of valuable content that could do the world quite a bit of good if it was easy to find and if they gave away their best stuff.

NACTO could have easily been a committee under the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE), yet the founding members chose to start their own organization.  The same goes for the Young Professionals in Transportation (YPT) in 2010, ITS America in 1991 and Women’s Transportation Seminar (WTS) all of the way back in 1977.  It’s too bad ITE hasn’t been able to be more inclusive.

With the leadership change at ITE, I’m expecting things to start evolving at a faster pace.  If it doesn’t, new groups are going to keep popping up that chip away at what ITE could be doing.  This will ultimately result in dwindling ITE membership.

NACTO website

  • I agree with you about the amount and value of content (whether easy-to-find $$$ reports or the ambiguously free) in each of their vaults, and the same goes mucho for the TRB. Imagine if that information was readily available and used across the country? Considerable travel time and fuel cost cuts aside, the potential lives saved would be historical.

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    Mike Spack

    My mission is to help traffic engineers, transportation planners, and other transportation professionals improve our world.

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