Updated

Beginning today there will be a new look on the city of Corvallis website, www.corvallisoregon.gov.

“We’re going to throw the switch in the morning, and you’ll probably start to see the new site thereafter,” said Patrick Rollens, the city’s public information officer.

The $40,000 upgrade is a joint project involving Rollens and the city’s information technology department. A-Ha Consulting, a subsidiary of Tallahassee, Florida, based Municode, led the redesign project.

The key goal of the upgrade was to make the website more user-friendly for those with mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones, which used to have problems displaying pages correctly. Those users now constitute a majority of those who use the city’s website, Rollens said.

The site now automatically detects the type of device that a visitor is using to view the site and adjusts the layout and information blocks accordingly.

The city’s website debuted in 2002, with minor tweaks in subsequent years and a full-on update that went live in September 2012.

In October, the city held two “sneak peek” sessions for the new site with city councilors, advisory board members and community members.

“We got quite a bit of good feedback,” said Rollens, who noted that a lot of the reaction led to fine-tuning of links and navigation.

“Several pages for making payments to the city didn’t have easily identifiable contact information for the Finance Department. A local business owner identified this during our testing sessions, and we were able to add that information to those pages and several related pages.”

The city also attempted with the new website to produce stronger links with Oregon State University by highlighting OSU website resources such as the university’s off-campus living guide.

“This will make it easier for OSU parents to discover this resource and pass it along to their kids as they’re preparing to attend the university," Rollens said.

Contact reporter James Day at jim.day@gazettetimes.com or 541-758-9542. Follow at Twitter.com/jameshday or gazettetimes.com/blogs/jim-day.

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