Darien unveils new town website
DARIEN — Visitors to Darien’s town website in the last two weeks may have noticed a major change in the look and feel of the site.
As of Aug. 15, a new, improved version of darienct.gov was launched. First Selectman Jayme Stevenson and Town Administrator Kate Buch worked with developers QScend Technologies, of Waterbury, to develop an easier-to-use site. QScend recently redeveloped the Darien Police Department’s website.
“The change was prompted by the need for more ‘user friendly’ website organization and navigation, to reduce the amount of duplicative information throughout the site, to prepare the site for more online services and to improve government transparency,” Stevenson said.
There was also a desire for a more visually striking website that would be more conducive to mobile use, Buch said.
Also, because QScend designed the police site, “there will be better site integration and a more uniform aesthetic,” Stevenson said.
Buch said plans for the site began in January. At that point she and Stevenson began working with QScend, viewing sample layouts, going over design plans and determining which would work. They entered into a contract with the company, which specializing in designing sites for municipalities, for $7,700.
Easier navigation, especially when it comes to finding meeting agendas, is one of the site’s major perks.
“On the old site you could go to look for an agenda for a meeting in three or four different places. We tried to narrow that down and have one place to look for things,” Buch said. “Most of the feedback we’ve gotten is very positive. The only complaint we’ve had has to do with things not being posted. The police have their own website; so does the Board of Education. So we have to remember that if they post something on their site, it still needs to come up to the main town page.”
As with any change, the site will need to be adjusted, Stevenson said, but will hopefully provide a better user experience.
“Our goal is to make sure the content is always up-to-date and accurate,” Stevenson said. “The site is only as good as the information in it.”