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1565 First Street
Sarasota, FL 34236

For Immediate Release: January 3, 2012


Sarasota, FL: The City of Sarasota unveiled a new website this morning featuring a vibrant fresh look and enhanced user friendly elements. The URL is still the same: “These front end changes make all the information on the website much more accessible,” said Bill Mallett, Web Communications Coordinator. “You don’t have to drill down several layers to find something. So, it’s faster to get the information you’re looking for.”

One way the website is more user friendly is the redesign of the homepage, which features six large reference tabs: News & Events, Government, Departments, City Services, City Business, and Things To Do. Each tab takes the user directly to an area of interest. For example, City Business highlights economic development within the City of Sarasota, including organizations in the private sector. “That’s a new feature. In the past we didn’t showcase economic development,” said Pamela Nadalini, City Auditor and Clerk. “Now, when you visit the website you have easy access to relevant information about doing business in Sarasota. People will know Sarasota is open for business.” The City Business page will feature a map detailing businesses throughout Sarasota. Similar to a Google map, it will highlight the location of a business, the kind of business (retail, restaurant or service) and other pertinent information. Merchants who would like to have their business included are encouraged to visit and submit an electronic application available on the City Business page. After the information is collected, the map will be created and posted in March. The map will be updated regularly.

The City Business page also showcases the original television program “City Business”, produced by the City of Sarasota, which highlights local retail stores and restaurants. A prominent video display screen makes it easy to locate and view the latest episode.

The midsection of the homepage features three popular destinations for information: City Calendar, Get Involved and Video On Demand. The City Calendar is now a focal point on the website highlighting upcoming events at City Hall and beyond. ‘Get Involved’ offers visitors an easy way to find a City of Sarasota form or application, whether it’s a right-of-way permit, a special event permit or an Advisory Board application. Just click the drop box for a comprehensive list. Perhaps one of the most visited areas of the website is Video On Demand. Drop boxes now offer easy access to what you would like to view: City Commission Meetings, Advisory Board Meetings or City Television Programming. “People are going to like how simple it is to find the video they’re looking for,” said Mr. Mallett. “We incorporated drop boxes to simplify navigating the site. Sometimes it can be frustrating going from one page to another to another. The new website eliminates much of that.”

The homepage also showcases all the amenities owned and operated by the City of Sarasota: Lido Pool, Bobby Jones Golf Club, Municipal Auditorium, Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, Bayfront Park, and the Robert L. Taylor Community Complex. With one click, a visitor can learn more about a particular amenity and even purchase tickets for an upcoming performance or book a tee time. “I’m pleased with the upgrades to the website,” said Ms. Nadalini. “The new site highlights my office’s commitment to transparency and easy access to information. Residents, business owners and people around the world will benefit from it.”
The City first launched in 2002. Each month, it attracts approximately 35,000-40,000 visitors.

For more information contact Bill Mallett, Web Communications Coordinator: 941-954-4160.

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