This article currently lives as a video tutorial here:

In this tutorial, you will learn how to quickly add a custom boundary to a map. You can do this using KML and KMZ layers. These files are easy to upload, versatile and can be exported from most GIS tools. They can be used to add multiple layers to your map for users to see and interact with as well as set the boundaries for public participation on your map. Each layer defines a new area, which is then converted, behind the scenes, to a singular boundary area. 

In the steps below, we will add a KMZ file to a map and convert it to a boundary. 

In the map dialog, click Add New KML or KMZ file.

You can either drag & drop a file into the dialog or select a file from your computer. In the example below, we have dropped a file into the dialog. Be patient while the file uploads in the background.

After it has been uploaded, you can zoom back into your project to the area you know contains the boundary, e.g. Jacksonville.

Important: You may not initially be able to see the boundary. To solve this problem, in the Included Map Layers section, mouse over the circle you see in the image below. You can see from the tooltip - Make this file the map boundary – that this option allows you to make the file you have imported the map boundary. Click on the circle. 

Now you can see how the various layers in the KML/KMZ file have been converted to create a  boundary within which users can interact with your map (demarcated by the red lines below. As you can see the boundary comprises multiple shapes.)

To make sure users can see the boundary, toggle the Show map boundary to users button. It should be green if you want users to see the boundary, i.e. the red lines. 

Now you can go back and view your map questions, making sure they are working as expected. For each question, click the Preview button. 

The associated map will appear as your participants will view it. 

Note: Participants will only be able to draw lines or add points within the boundaries created by your KMZ file. 

Happy mapping!

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