New City Website Provides Quicker, Better Service to Citizens
City government has launched a new, much improved website that makes it easier for citizens to access services and information – whether they are on a desktop computer, tablet or mobile device, Mayor Greg Fischer announced today.
The new louisvilleky.gov website is designed to automatically resize whether you’re viewing on a desktop, tablet or smartphone. It’s called responsive design, and it gives citizens the best user experience from a wide variety of devices.
“We live and work in an increasingly digital world and one of our top goals is to make more data and services available online,” Fischer said. “We’ve taken an already award-winning website, made it much stronger and also created a platform for further progress in the near future.”
The new site also features a much-improved way to find city services and forms, an improved events calendar and a clutter-free design. Many of the site improvements were suggested by citizens in a survey conducted by the city’s Metro Technology Services team and public user testing.
Fischer said it was important to optimize the new website for people using smartphones or tablets because they now account for almost half of the traffic to the city site. In 2010 only 6.5 percent of visitors were using a tablet or smartphone. Today that number is 53 percent.
He said the city is working on additional online improvements for 2015 including further advances in search technology and advances to the
MyLouisville tool, which currently lets you enter an address and find city services including your junk set-out days, garbage and recycling days and police and Metro Council district information. The goal with MyLouisville will be to let users customize their experience with the site and make it easier and faster to pay online.
“We have a long list of site improvements we plan to make over the next few years,” said Jason Ballard, director of the city’s Information Technology Services department. “Many will focus on allowing citizens to engage with their local government on their terms, more seamlessly.”
Louisvilleky.gov has consistently been ranked one of the best city websites in the nation – in the top four since 2006 and ranked number one in 2012 -- according to the Center for Digital Government. A growing number of online services and applications are available to citizens including:
- Licensing a pet
- Tracking crime reports in neighborhoods
- Reserving and paying for parking spaces and meters, including before an event
- Signing up to be notified of development and related public hearings in your neighborhood
- Tracking the progress of city crews in clearing snow and ice from area roadways
- Signing up for text or email alerts on upcoming junk pickup dates
- Viewing restaurant inspection scores
- Searching for property maintenance, construction permits, ABC licenses & vacant properties
- Reporting and tracking an issue online with MetroCall
- Finding a park by feature, such as tennis, fishing, splash park or walking path
- Ordering a garbage or recycling bin
Citizens can also track the performance of city government itself by visiting the LouieStat portal (http://louiestat.louisvilleky.gov). LouieStat is short for Louisville Statistics, and uses data from Metro Government departments to track what the government is doing, how it’s doing it, and how it can improve.
Visitors and use of the city website has grown steadily over the years with the site now averaging more than one million page-views a month.
Louisvilleky.gov is managed by the Information Technology Services department. The look of the new site was designed by local web development firm Net Tango, with the main development of the site’s content management system being done by Fig Leaf Software.
“The new website brings together a number of best-of-breed technologies, including the Acquia Drupal platform and the Google Search Appliance, to deliver an optimal and mobile-first web experience,” said Dave Gallerizzo USMCR (Ret.), CEO of Fig Leaf Software. “The city of Louisville's focus on a web-based self-service model, for both its constituents and content editors, promotes both the quick dissemination and consumption of content. In a time of increasing informational need, on the part of constituents, and increasing service expectations, on the part of local governments, their focus on this synergy is forward thinking, admirable, and worthwhile.”