Chattanooga’s Innovation District Beckons to Young Entrepreneurs

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — From Boston to Seattle, cities across the country are vying to create technology hubs, spurring real estate developments to attract start-ups and young entrepreneurs.

To the south, this smaller but thriving city is seeing returns on its effort to do the same. Chattanooga has leveraged its lightning-fast broadband connections to develop a tech scene in its recently designed innovation district, a 140-acre section of its compact central business district.

At the district’s core, the Edney Innovation Center draws young entrepreneurs who pace across the polished concrete floors and talk business from couches and beanbag chairs that give the 90,000-square-foot office building the feel of a college study hall.

The Edney Center is a crucible for advancing their ideas. Purchased and renovated for $4.4 million by Talon Partners, a group of local developers, the 10-story building opened in October at Market and 11th Streets. It is seen by Chattanooga’s civic leaders as the gateway to the city’s commanding new business enterprise — using the six-year-old ultra-high-speed broadband network to attract and assist high-tech start-ups in becoming mature, homegrown companies.

Read the full story at nytimes.com.

Victoria Krisman is Interactive Media Specialist for the Intelligent Community Forum.
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