The Town of Princeton has a fresh digital face, with the launch Friday of the municipality’s new website.
“It definitely gives us a more professional look,” said Gary Schatz, director of economic development, who has been in discussions about the new site since last summer.
The launching of the site is a key step in providing council with the technology to live stream meetings, and that process is expected to be in place in the next month, according to CAO Lyle Thomas.
“This council, and every council, wants to be transparent and we know we don’t get a lot of community participation at council meetings. This way people can actually tune in on a council night from the comfort of their home.”
Schatz said the new site is a significant improvement over the old version.
It was built and will be serviced by a Winnipeg company which specializes in municipal government websites and will cost the town $6,000 per year.
The new site “is more user friendly, it has brighter colors,” said Schatz.
It has improved search capabilities and new tabs including a business directory and coming events.
There is also a reader poll feature.
Schatz said any person in town with a business license is able to upload an entry to promote themselves.
“It’s a nice little tool for our businesses here,” he said. “It’s a nice piece of advertising.”
The site will make it easier to promote Princeton and its assets such as the industrial park, he added.
One of its most important features is that it can be updated and kept current by town staff, without having to go through a web controller.
“The recreation manager is able to update the calendar to let people know what’s going on, and Lori over at the tourism center is able to update the tourist information.”
As part of its contract, the site builder will produce an upgraded site in three years.
Schatz said there have been the usual hiccups with the launch.
“We are still getting some of the bugs worked out…I believe in Beta testing, and doing it live. Let’s get it out there and we will get the mistakes fixed on the fly.”