Hidden Treasure

Many of us like to complain about the way other people's websites are organized. Sometimes it is easy to see how bad information architecture or site navigation happens. Often the original navigation could not grow with the site. Sometimes the organizational structure changes and the site can't adapt. One of the most frustrating things about using a poorly designed website is finding buried content that should be easily accessible.

Conversely, when I have had the opportunity to professionally review and restructure websites, finding buried treasure and making it available is extremely satisfying. Sometimes organizations spend a lot of time and money developing content just to bury it. So here, for free, is a well hidden treasure from the City of Ottawa website.

The City of Ottawa Interactive Traffic Map is a good resource. It is Google map that includes cycle routes, city parking lots, links to traffic cameras, construction events and much more.

It is not linked to from the homepage or from the Maps page. A site search for the exact title of the page does not return it, although there is a link to it from some of the returns. One of the problems is that the map is poorly named, as it offers a lot more than traffic information.