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Yesterday the City of St. Augustine went live with a new website replacing the one launched over three years ago. Sporting a cleaner more contemporary look, the site's address remains www.CityStAug.com.
The new site is the result of months of work by a team of a dozen members of city staff representing all departments and every area of city services and programs. Now that the site is live with its more than 600 pages, the team will continue working as they carefully review the information and the functionality of the site making minor changes and corrections to ensure the new site is complete.
While the site includes a new look, and much of the content remains the same, there are new features designed to make the site more user friendly. Probably the feature users will find most helpful is the "How Can I" tab with more than 200 quick links organized under over 50 categories. Other new features easily accessible from the home page.
• Improved navigation: The site's navigation is organized topically rather than simply the city's organizational chart. The goal is still to ensure that the user is not more that three clicks from their destination.
• Mega menu: The mega-menu may be one of the first navigation changes users will notice. The feature is becoming the standard for how web sites operate so as to get users to their destination quicker.
• Notify me: The feature will allow users to be notified every time new content is added or changes made to the site. For instance, if a meeting date is changed on the site's calendar, the user will be notified by email or text message.
• Report a concern: Users are now able to easily and quickly notify the city of a safety or utility issue such as water outages, broken sidewalk or downed tree.
• GIS map library: In the works by the staff in the GIS Division for months, the new website is making available a large library of interactive maps showing locations of short-term rentals, planned paving projects, and parking passport zones.
Even though a lot of work has gone into building the new site, the work is not over. Over the next few weeks staff will continue to check every page to ensure its content is correct and its functions working correctly. One staff member used the example of moving into a new residence in that getting everything into the house or apartment is just the start. Then one begins to unpack and arrange furniture and pictures, and then it becomes a home.
The city asks for the community's patience during the tweaking stages, but also encourages all to visit the site, look around, click on links, and above all use the new and more dynamic search feature. Questions or comments may be directed to webmaster@CityStAug.com.