BY RUTH ROBERTS, PUBLISHED IN "THE PRESS" - JUNE 30, 2010
Discovery Bay’s new Web site made its quiet debut this week following a much-anticipated and often public debate on the quest to revamp the outdated site.
“I wanted to have a soft rollout of the site because it gives the staff an opportunity to look at it, tinker with it and see if it is consistent with their initial thoughts and expectations,” said Discovery Bay General Manager Rick Howard.
The project began last September when the town hired NIA Creative to update the town’s existing site. NIA Creative, owned by Discovery Bay residents Chris and Jennifer Finetti, won the contract with the highest bid of $23,500. The other bidders, Mission Peak and Noble Image, came in at $6,100 and $7,000 respectively.
The significant discrepancy was a sticking point for some residents, but although Tom Newman of Mission Peak Designs, located in Discovery Bay, was disappointed he was not awarded the contract, he understood that the board was looking for a company with a little higher performance level.
“They (NIA) are a high-end company,” said Newman. “They have more bells and whistles; they brand their sites and that kind of thing. I think the board was looking for that.”
The new site features a more modern look, highlighting photos of the town, the staff and CSD directors, a community calendar and a news and announcements component that will allow for timely news releases and community updates, plus the capability to post agendas and meeting minutes in a simple PDF format for public viewing.
The new Web site also comes with audio and video streaming abilities for uploading of the monthly CSD meetings and special events.
In addition to launching the Web site, the town has implemented a new URL – or Web page address. “One of the most important things to spotlight (along with the Web site) is the launching of a new URL: www.todb.ca.gov,” said Jennifer Finetti. “The ca.gov designation now aligns the Town of Discovery Bay CSD Web site with other local government agencies and municipalities. The old URL, www.townofdiscoverybay.org is still operational, but will automatically forward to the new URL so that the members of the community will have easy access to the new Web site no matter what address they use.
The formal announcement of the Web site’s launch will come at the town’s next CSD meeting on July 7.
“When businesses open for the first time, they often do it quietly to get things working right and to make sure any bugs have been worked out, and that’s what we wanted to do too,” said Howard. “Web sites are always a work in progress. They are fluid; they never stay the same – or at least they shouldn’t, as issues such as meetings and things come up. I think it’s a great site. I’m very happy with it.”