In honor of the new Borough website, I’ve decided to test the functionality and ease of navigation by attempting to pay a parking ticket. (This is not an entirely altruistic endeavor.)
Actually on first glance the new site looks much like the old site – the image is a little larger but traffic alerts are still at the top of the page; the drop down menus appear much the same. So if the redesign wasn’t aesthetically based maybe it was a true usability upgrade?
I don’t have access to the old site to compare but the menus do appear a little clearer, easier to navigate. There seems to have been effort made to better align the wording with how people search. Under the fold, icons were added to align with frequently requested items.
There is also a “How Can I” section that seeks to walk the reader to the information they need. A much needed upgrade in a previously hard to navigate website.
Anyway, it looks quietly promising but to put it to the test I’m going to try and pay a parking ticket – online.
How to Pay a Parking Ticket
On your desktop.
Hover over the services tab on the main nav bar. Select pay for a parking ticket.
There are 5 options for paying your ticket:
- Mail – Tickets can be paid by mail.
- In Person – At the Borough Municipal Building Parking Office from 8:00 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday.
- Deposit Box – Drop them in the silver box in the municipal parking lot.
- Pay By Phone – Dial 610-546-7054
- Or Online –
If you click on online it will take you to the Online Payment Center where you can choose to pay ticket. (You can also pay your stream protection fee, water bill and parking registration here.)
If you’re a scroller, under the main homepage image you’ll see a $ icon and online payments. This skips the intermediary page outlining all your payment options and takes you directly to the online payment center.
To complete your payment you’ll need your license plate or ticket number.
On your phone.
Now for the real challenge. (I’ve attempted this on the old site and gave up in defeat and mailed in my fine.)
Scroll down to Online Payments then ticket payments and disputes.
The How Can I section is available on the mobile version as well. If you expand Pay you will see an option to pay parking ticket.
Options 3 & 4:
You can also pay if you go to the menu bar and select services – or if you type pay a parking ticket in the search bar the correct page will come up.
Meter offenders of West Chester rejoice – they couldn’t have made this action much easier to complete.
A good first step but the real test will come when we move beyond high-volume actions. I am curious to see if this new site will help facilitate the flow of information from the government to residents? Which one can only hope was a top goal for the redesign.
[Note: The redesign was led by William Mann Chief Information Officer for the Borough. I die reach out to Mr. Mann for his insight and stated goals for the redesign but I did not receive a response. I did find the department’s mission statement on the new website so score one for usability unfortunately, the mission is more a statement of work that lends little insight into vision behind the redesign. So I am just going under the assumption the goals are much the same as most website redesigns that are not aesthetically motivated, improved usability and ease of navigation.]
What are your thoughts? Have you tried to find something on the new site? How’d it go?
Insider tip: Parking is unpermitted by many of the parks, like this one