BY KELSEY HEELEY
Waterloo Mayor Brenda Halloran recently announced the launch of a new and improved Waterloo website so residents have easier access to whatever information they need.
In 2011, Waterloo City Council approved the building of a new corporate website.
Shelly Reed, communications specialist for Waterloo, said the website (www.waterloo.ca) is the city’s primary tool for informing and educating its audience and it needed to reflect and meet the needs of the tech-savvy community. She added Waterloo needed a site built with the residents in mind.
“Our old website was very much structured by the city department. This new website was geared toward the residents. The information they need is now found in areas of the site that make sense to them,” Reed said.
The goal of the website is to engage the community with easy to understand information that can also be obtained quickly. Reed said the mayor’s and council’s hope is once people visit the site, they’ll like what they see and keep coming back.
Brittany Milne, a customer representative at Scotia Bank in Uptown Waterloo, said, “I like the new website, it’s much easier to find information. On the first page you see, there are five options and everything is categorized under them and underneath the categories is the latest news.”
Milne also said she liked the picture slide show as the background.
The site can be translated into different languages and people can register online for overnight parking exemptions and apply for sign permits and rental housing licences. You can also report a bylaw violation online.
As well, the site is mobile friendly, it is rich in graphics and all the pictures are local. There is also a calculator so residents can understand how their tax dollars are spent. It’s linked to social media sites and the information you need can be found quickly and efficiently.