Learn the opportunities, challenges, and lessons learned in the creation of Innovation Districts in Fort Wayne, Indiana and Richmond, Virginia. According to Bruce Katz and Julie Wagner’s The Rise of Innovation Districts: A New Geography of Innovation in America, innovation districts “are a key part of the new wave of local economic development and advance several critical objectives,” including job growth and accessibility, environmental sustainability, and revenue generation. Innovation districts require several different actors to execute their vision. Mason Ailstock (HR&A) will share trends and lessons learned in fostering place-based innovation in mid-sized cities. Jeff Kingsbury (Ancora) will share his experiences developing Electric Works in Fort Wayne, Indiana on the historic former General Electric campus. This public-private partnership project is already in the works, with its 740,000 sq. ft. first phase delivering in 2022. Maritza Pechin (City of Richmond) will review the process underway to establish the City Center Innovation District, located in the heart of Downtown Richmond, Virginia. The redevelopment includes finding private sector partners to reposition several acres of vacant and underutilized City-owned parcels.