Ghent is Benelux’s first city to go for its own domain extension

Gravensteen.gent, kaa.gent or vriewijs.gent? Soon, this will all be possible.

On 23th June, the bench of Aldermen of the City of Ghent approved the request of City TLD for the use of the .gent extension. The City of Ghent is the first city in the Benelux to disclose its plans for its own extension. Many companies, and even organizations and citizens, increase their direct connection with the city and region, improving their findability on the internet while increasing the Internet traffic security to and from their own site in the process.

Resul Tapmaz, Alderman of Personnel Management, Informatics, Administrative Simplification and Quality Care in Ghent is delighted that his city – after . paris, . nyc and .berlin - may announce its own domain extension together with City TLD (Combell and Sensirius) as the first city in the Benelux: "Ghent is a city where ICT and creativity go hand in hand. Think of the many Belgian Internet companies who made their start here. Not only for our local businesses and merchants, but also for our own services, the .gent extension is indispensable. We want our city services to actively promote the .gent domain. I think of www.ocmw.gent, www.toerisme.gent, www.bibliotheek.gent, www.smak.gent or email addresses for residents in the form of resul@tapmaz.gent. The possibilities are really unlimited because all combinations for dot gent are available."

"As company and citizen of Ghent, I am very pleased that we were the first in the Benelux achieving its own extension for a city. Apart from .gent, we are currently looking at a number of possible new extensions, of which we can’t disclose their name yet. We noticed from the latest feedback that there’s a lot of interest in own extensions, especially since the new rules of ICANN." says Jonas Dhaenens, CEO of Combell.

The internet extensions are regulated by an American non-profit organisation. Monday, the questionnaire was finally adopted at the ICANN conference in Singapore so applicants know what criteria they must meet. Now the regulator starts a global communications campaign for 4 months, and in January 2012, the documents are ready to be processed. Then the regulator checks the documents for their administrative correctness and checks the technical infrastructure. If everything goes according to plan, the .gent extension will be applicable in late 2012.