Innovation District offers opportunity to close 'digital divide'

Chattanooga City Council Chairman Moses Freeman, who represents District 8, speaks during a recent city council meeting.

New business, job creation and a community of new ideas have all been touted as benefits of Chattanooga's new downtown Innovation District. But according to some, the district can also be used as an asset for some of the city's most underserved populations.

In addition to the larger businesses that define the Innovation District, such as Lamp Post, Coyote Logistics and EPB, nonprofits such as Co. Lab, Public Education Foundation and others will define the district, Enterprise Center President and CEO Ken Hays said during an open house for the Edney Innovation Center.

The Edney, a 90,000-square-foot, 10-story building touted as the hub of the district, will serve as a central location for collaborative groups like Co. Starters and programs such as Tech Goes Home, which provides both adults and children in underserved areas of the city with technology education, tools and access.