Bow Islanders will now have a refreshing new way to receive information about their town.
The process began last winter where the Lethbridge-based SMB Apps created the town’s smart phone app, which went live this past fall and the website was finished and launched prior to the Christmas break.
“For the most part, it’s up and running and ready to go,” said Town of Bow Island CAO Dave Matz.
“We’ll be doing more updates as time progresses (and) we’ll be putting more information up on it.”
New features for the website included being designed to be easier to look at with limited distractions, while the white background and simple fonts will reduce eye strain.
Recreation and event calendars will be simpler to find as well as website users will be able to print development permits, the option to receive utility bills and receive newsletters through email.
Change was prominent for the community.
“The old website was built for looking at on a PC computer and so now most people are now on mobile devices. The new website is formatted so it looks best on a mobile phone or a tablet,” said Matz.
“The biggest difference is the website is easier to look at on a phone. The old one would show up as really small lettering .”
The town app makes the process simpler to look at event calendars, contact town office and local businesses in the Business Directory.
App users will be able to submit notices to the community sign, find links to newsletters and council minutes.
“Once we get enough people to download it on their phones, they’ll be able to receive push notifications,” he said.
“I guess the big advantage we can is if there is an emergency. If there an emergency event going on in town then we can use the app to directly communicate with people and let them know what’s going on quickly.
A few people have downloaded the app, but that is due to the app not being advertised to the public yet, he added.
“The goal is for people to be more engaged with their local government and go on the website and look at some of the budgets and minutes in council meetings and just be more informed on what is going on with the town council and town events,” said Matz.
The website’s address is still the same at http://www.bowisland.com.