City of Boulder Smart Survey

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panoramic-view city-of-boulder person biking trail

The City of Boulder, Colorado, Department of Transportation conducts citizen transportation surveys. These surveys are managed by National Research Center Inc. (NRC).

DVmobile designed a mobile app version of the survey for iOS and Android devices, as the first step into transforming transportation surveys from paper to digital.

city of boulder
national research center


As part of the study and request by the City, paper surveys coexisted with the mobile app. This same survey has been done since 1991 with paper; the data collected would have to match all previous records to preserve the relevance of the study. Having both digital and paper helps compare the response for each medium and its adoption.


The app was divided in sections:

• Welcome & Tutorial: warm and clear explanation of the survey, its importance, and how it works.

• Transportation Questionnaire: questions about transportation habits and type of vehicles owned.

• Work Questionnaire: typical demographic questions.

• My Trips: list of trips recorded by GPS during one day.

• Feedback: final questions about the experience.


Automatic Recording of Trips

The most important section of the survey is My Trips, where all the activity is recorded automatically by GPS algorithms designed specifically to detect movement and duration for the type of behavior expected.

Trips are listed chronologically and show start or end times and a route map. Users describe further details such as purpose and transportation mode used.

This information is much richer to the City planners than what traditional surveys can ever provide. Capturing it in an easy and convenient way is key to the app's success. 

dashboard showing map routes
people riding bus
highway 36 cars commuting boulder
bicycle bike b-cycle park station

Key features:

  • Auto-detect of trip start (GPS location and time).
  • Notification reminders for important dates (survey start, submission deadline, etc.).
  • Data collected is optimized and presented in a friendly web dashboard for a more efficient analysis.
  • GPS points and routes can be exported into GIS systems.
  • User Interface was designed for a broad range of users, to ease the process of logging trips, and to simplify a complex survey.

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SmartSurveys are Colorado Designed™ software

DVmobile is a Colorado Company™

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