Beautiful Lewiston, Maine is a vibrant city—rich with culture and history. It is known for its business-friendly, diversified economy, as well as first-class healthcare and top-notch educational opportunities. Residents and visitors alike enjoy the city’s widely acclaimed festivals and events, arts and cultural offerings, nature trails, and riverfront recreation. Lewiston has transitioned from a textile/industrial based economy to one that now includes healthcare, telecommunications, finance, education, and light manufacturing. Efforts to restore vacant textile buildings by repurposing them for retail and business have brought in many new jobs and housing options such as The Lofts at Bates Mill. Lewiston has further demonstrated its adaptability over the past decade, as more than 4,000 refugees from several countries were attracted to the city as a safe community to raise a family. The community response was a collaborative effort to welcome them and embrace the opportunity to experience their culture, customs, and traditions.
Lewiston needed a website that could keep residents informed. Dottie Perham-Whittier, Community Relations Coordinator, said their former website was “very difficult to maneuver,” and only one employee was responsible for all web postings. To post information in a more timely fashion, they needed a website that additional staff members could easily access and update. They also wanted to engage with residents to a greater degree.
Lewiston’s new website is more visually appealing with many user-friendly aspects. Multiple employees have been trained and can now easily update the site, which is a plus for residents. In the News provides breaking news and important information, and Emergency Alert has been effective in communicating notices such as winter parking bans. Notify Me and Report a Concern are both widely used by residents to stay up-to-date on areas of interest to them and to share their requests and concerns. The city is enjoying this increased capacity to provide its residents with two-way communication and Perham-Whittier says the public response has been positive.