As promoted on their website for months, Charlottesville launched a new website yesterday. The content appears to be basically the same as was up before — what’s changed is the design (it’s distinctly less hideous) and the content management system (out of the fire and into the frying pan). This replaced the site they launched in 2001 and will hopefully make it possible to link to pages on the site again.
Unfortunately, they’ve moved from URLs of Death (http://www.charlottesville.org/default.asp?pageid=69BA9DD5-8CF7-4591-90EC-919ACDA784D1) to merely meaningless URLs (http://www.charlottesville.org/Index.aspx?page=161); there’s no RSS feed to keep up with city news; the code isn’t even close to valid; and no apparent effort has been made to make the site compliant with Section 508 (ADA) standards, despite the accessibility statement to the contrary.
That said, I can only assume that this CMS is better than their old one, so this hopefully puts them on a path that will make it easier to correct these problems. The important thing is that the new site integrates with CityLink, their new city-management software, which opens the door to things like paying taxes and making service requests on-line. The site was developed by a California-based firm, and runs on their proprietary CMS.