How It Works2019-05-27T15:52:08-07:00


MetroQuest optimizes community engagement in 3 simple stages:


1. Set-up

For any outreach project, use the intuitive MetroQuest Studio to set-up an engaging public Site (survey).


2. Engage

Launch your MetroQuest Site to educate and delight citizens, maximizing informed input from a broad demographic.


3. Analyze

Your dashboard in MetroQuest Studio makes it easy to monitor, analyze, and report on your engagement results.

Stage 1. Set-up your Sites using MetroQuest Studio.

Priority ranking for your community engagement project

Build engaging Sites

When engaging the public on complex initiatives like comprehensive or transportation plans, it’s challenging to help citizens understand the issues and to stimulate participation with long, text-based surveys.

With MetroQuest Studio, you can launch visually compelling Sites that attract participants, educate them about your projects, and collect informed input for actionable results!

Create delightful online experiences

To build a MetroQuest Site that suits the needs of your project, simply select 5 MetroQuest Screen templates to gather input on visual preferences, scenarios, tradeoffs, priorities, projects, or budgeting. Complete each Screen with messages, colours, and images to create a delightful online engagement experience.

With your annual subscription, you can create unlimited MetroQuest Sites to engage citizens year-round and support all your outreach initiatives.

Budget allocation for your community engagement project

“In providing understanding, graphic information, and visualizations that inform and excite the public, they have no peer.” – Ron Thomas, American Planning Association (APA)

Stage 2. Engage to maximize informed input.

It’s time to go beyond public meetings that attract smaller motivated groups. Launching your public MetroQuest Site makes it easy to reach thousands of average citizens online. It’s common to engage 1,000 to 10,000+ participants across a broad demographic to better represent your whole community.

“We increased our level of public participation by 1,900% on our very first project with MetroQuest.” – Jamille Robbins, NCDOT

Promote your public MetroQuest Site with email, news channels, and social media. For more proven ways to engage thousands, get the Beginner’s Guide →

Optimize participation with visually engaging Screens

Designed to optimize engagement, MetroQuest surveys are quick to complete on any device – laptops, tablets, smart phones, and kiosks! Explore all 14 MetroQuest Screen Types with these sample customer Sites:


Welcome screen

The Welcome Screen is used to briefly set the context for the project and encourage people to participate. It is a visually appealing screen with room for a bit of background and a call to action.

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Wrap Up

Wrap up screen

The Wrap Up Screen collects demographic information, informs about next steps and other opportunities for input, thanks participants and encourages them to help spread the word.

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Priority Ranking

Priority ranking screen

The Priority Ranking Screen is used to rank order a set of items. It’s an easy and intuitive way to get quality feedback from the community on issues, objectives, topics or priorities.

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Scenario Rating

The Scenario Rating Screen allows participants to learn about scenarios through visualizations and performance metrics ranked according to their top priorities before providing input.

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Visual Preference

Visual preference screen

The Visual Preference Screen allows participants to select a preferred image among a set of choices. It’s a fast and easy way to collect input on visual alternatives.

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Image Rating

Image rating screen

The Image Rating Screen allows participants to rate or vote on a series of images one at a time. It provides a fast and visual way for visitors to provide input on designs, concepts or options.

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Map Marker

York Region's Transportation Master Plan

The Map Marker Screen uses the familiar Google Map interface to allow visitors to drag markers to areas of interest or concern and add comments if they wish throughout your study area.

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Project Selection

Project selection screen

The Project Selection Screen collects input on potential projects on a map. Participants can rate or vote on each project and, if applicable, even see a tally of costs to constrain their choices.

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Budget Allocation

Budget allocation screen

Using the Budget Allocation Screen participants allocate resources to spending categories. It’s a great way to educate about budget limitations and collect feedback on priorities.

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Funding Balance

Funding balance screen

The Funding Balance Screen challenges participants to hit a budget target using an array of funding sources. It’s a fun way to collect input on the feasibility of various funding options.

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Vision Statement

Vision screen

The Vision Statement Screen collects open-ended ideas on hopes or visions for a community. This free form input provides a great snapshot of public views to inform your project.

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Tradeoffs screen

The Tradeoffs Screen allows visitors to weigh a series of options head to head. Tradeoffs are presented in pairs and participants simply indicate their preferences on a sliding scale.

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Strategy Rating

Strategy rating screen

The Strategy Rating Screen collects input on any list of strategies or actions. Participants simply navigate through items in up to 5 categories and provide a rating and comment if they wish.

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Standard Survey

Standard survey screen

The Standard Survey Screen allows you to ask a set of survey questions in a variety of formats including multiple choice, image selection, drop-down boxes, rating items, and open text input.

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Stage 3. Analyze your data for actionable results.

Traffic reporting on the results of your community engagement project

Trust in your results

Not all engagement software delivers the same outcomes. It’s hard to trust the answers to simple multiple choice questions.

MetroQuest has been designed through decades of research and used by millions of people. It delivers both quantity and quality – collecting tens of thousands of quantifiable data points from diverse groups of informed citizens.

Get actionable insights

MetroQuest Studio features interactive dashboards unique to each MetroQuest Screen, making it easy to explore and share your results.

The quality and effectiveness of your data is critical to the success of your public engagement initiatives. MetroQuest results are optimized to give decision makers the confidence they need to make important planning and investment decisions.

Distribution reporting for your community engagement project

“We got just tremendous response to MetroQuest to both phases. Probably combined, we had about 5,000 survey responses. Certainly it made a tremendous impact in being able to demonstrate that the plan we had responded to what the community wanted for the future of Nashville.” – Greg Claxton, Nashville Next Planner, Metro Nashville Planning Commission Read the case study →

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Who Uses MetroQuest?

The MetroQuest software is used by hundreds of cities and government agencies as well as public involvement, planning and engineering firms. With over 18 years of use on award-winning projects on five continents, MetroQuest has earned its recommendation as a best practice by the International Association for Public Participation, the American Planning Association, the Federal Highway Administration, the Transportation Research Board and many others.

Do People Need To Sign-Up or Log On To Participate?

No. The MetroQuest software is optimized to engage as many people as possible – going well beyond the “usual suspects.” For that reason, it’s designed to avoid any possible barriers to participation like requiring people to sign-up before they participate. Such a barrier typically reduces participation by approximately 90%. MetroQuest still allows you to collect demographic information on participants as well as email address and other information as a part of your survey if you wish.

How Do We Detect Ballot Stuffing or Other Abuse?

Planning processes can be controversial and abuse is always a possibility. MetroQuest has tools and techniques to identify and help mitigate ballot stuffing in order to protect the integrity of the results. It’s very rare but, if it happens, these tools allow potential abuse to be easily recognized and nullified.

Who Provides the Kiosks or iPads if We Want to Use Them in Our Project?

There are many great third-party suppliers that rent or sell kiosks, iPads and other hardware compatible with MetroQuest. If you have any difficulty finding one, please let us know. We’ll be happy to point you in the right direction.

Where Is the Data Stored? For How Long?

To conform with national requirements, all personal data provided by participants is stored in the US for US clients and in Canada for Canadian clients. All remaining data is stored on cloud-based servers in the United States. All data collected by MetroQuest is retained indefinitely, even after your project finishes so if you lose your final data reports, MetroQuest has got you covered.

Does MetroQuest Support Multiple Languages?

Yes. MetroQuest has the capability to support multiple languages. You can set up as many languages as are needed for your community allowing your participants to easily toggle to their preferred language when they begin.