The City of Hood River has launched a new website to replace its decade old site with a user-friendly, modern design that’s a source of accurate, easy-to-find, current information for the public.
A newly developed website with intuitive navigation, modern functionality, and aesthetically pleasing design that is responsive to all devices was a recommendation in the City’s five-year Information Technology (IT) Strategic Plan adopted last year, which served as a foundation for the website redevelopment process.
The IT Plan called for an evaluation of the organization and desired features for a redeveloped online presence that led to a website analysis and plan advanced by communications consultant Pageworks Design. The plan reviewed website analytics and research on best practices in municipal web design that informed a description of desired website criteria for the City of Hood River, as well as a review of vendor proposals.
The City engaged the services of local website developer Gorge Web Design last fall to develop and support the new city website in the scalable WordPress platform, another IT Plan recommendation. Gorge Web Design has created websites for other public agencies, including the Port of Hood River and Mid-Columbia Economic Development District.
Fast loading times, easy-to-locate high-priority resources, E-commerce functionality and a user-friendly content management system (CMS) to more easily keep pages up-to-date were a few features identified. A language translation button and accessibilities for those with disabilities were also requirements.
Improving city communications and/or community relations has been a stated City Council goal for four consecutive years. Offering a modern and highly functional website is a key component to a more effective public communications program.