Year: 2007
Client: Toronto Community News, Metroland
URL: is the central hub for 9 community newspapers in the GTA. It also serves as a portal to classified, automotive, business, and other dedicated verticals.

I had the opportunity to redesign the sites from the ground up when Torstar moved from a proprietary system to its own CMS built on the Microsoft .NET framework. Development was in Visual Studio, and I hired an additional programmer for the implementation.

I designed the information architecture and feature-set of the site. I produced extensive wireframes, and crafted the CSS.

The re-architecting and implementation of a new editorial workflow was another important (and complicated) part of the migration. I shepherded the migration from QuarkXPress and Word to an InDesign CS + InCopy XML-based workflow. This was a two part process. First, I re-implemented and greatly enhanced the the newspapers' layouts in InDesign. Further, we created a wizard (web application written in PHP) to dynamically generate InCopy templates pre-populated with all the metadata required both for web publication and print integration. Articles written in these templates were fed though an additional XML pre-processor which I built in php that transformed our XML to conform with the exigencies of the TOPS CMS.

I also provided extensive training to the Editorial and Photo departments on the new back-end features.

Since my leaving the company in February '08, the design has necessarily changed. The thumbnails below show the site as it once was, circa 2007.

click on the thumbnails below for a more detailed view: