Pa. borough to pilot Unisys portal
- By Daniel Keegan
- Jul 28, 2000
Unisys Corp. has chosen West Chester, Pa., for a community Internet portal
pilot project that aims to bring citizens, business and government together
on one site.
Unisys, based in nearby Blue Bell, Pa., will spend about $30 million to
set up the World Wide Web portal for West Chester and the surrounding townships
East Bradford, East and West Goshen, Thornbury, Westtown and West Whiteland.
"The idea is that if they go to www.westchester.locallife.com, they can
enter the borough of West Chester as a whole, accessing the government and
business community," said Laura Pitt, administrative assistant for the borough
manager and the designer of the West Chester's current Web site.
Unisys will host the main site and offer to host sites for businesses and
other organizations, charging monthly fees. The company will also establish
a "cybercafe," an office where people can have access to the portal.
Pitt said the portal will be free to everyone for general access, but for
those who want additional services, such as a customized site or advanced
e-commerce transactions, there may be fees. Pitt said Unisys is considering
having people pay a monthly $2 to $5 fee, or charging nothing for a year
to try and build excitement about the project.
Mary Ann Zaborowski, vice president and general manager of the program for
Unisys, said the company chose West Chester because they could test the
concept in the company's backyard and then branch out.
"This is the first of many incubator programs, where we're bringing businesses
and government together," Zaborowski said.