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May/June 2020
Support Local Businesses, Meet STEM Professionals, Win Prizes at Hack-a-Thon, and more
Smart Cities - Creating A Brighter Future
This month an article about smart cities by Alison Barlow of the Innovation District was featured in the Broadband Library Journal.  Below are excerpts from this article. 
A smart city is one that improves the quality of life for its residents by using technology to respond to challenges being faced in an ever-changing environment. With that said, there is no one definition for being a smart city and there is no moment (at least for me) that a city is finally smart. It is a gradual process that begins with small steps such as citizen feedback tools where potholes and safety issues are reported or smart parking applications that eliminate coins and track available spots. It grows to include infrastructure improvements of new streetlights or motion sensor pedestrian crosswalks. Most residents may never acknowledge, or even realize, that they are living in a smart city. Rather they will simply know they live in a community that is adaptive, responsive and delivers on the promise that is a great place to live, work and play.

Innovation flourishes in smart cities. A successful smart city strategy is not a one size fits all solution, but rather a constellation of tools and ingenuity adapted for the unique challenges of that community. Being a smart city is most valuable when technology is used to accelerate the development of a city and create a brighter future for its residents. In today’s world being a smart city means being a successful city.

Meet STEM Professionals

If you follow the Innovation District on FaceBook you've seen a series of short videos the Innovation District produced in partnership with BEST Academy that feature several local young, diverse STEM professionals.  Here is the full video.  Take a moment to hear the stories of this group of amazing STEM professionals - how they found their love of science, and the careers they have chosen.
Support Local Businesses
Our kudos this month goes to the innovators who have developed creative ways to facilitate all of us supporting local businesses.  Please take advantage of these resources.  Click on the picture to be taken to their website.

Imagine if each of us spent $20 locally... we would generate a million

Be intentional about supporting black-owned businesses

Put Your Skills To The Test

The Innovation District is proud to partner with the Suncoast Developers Guild for their inaugural Summer Solstice Hackathon to be held virtually from June 19 – 21, 2020.  

Hackathons usually occurs over a short time, and participants are given a “challenge” to address.  For this event, three problems of local importance have been identified.  Individuals and teams are encouraged to participate in developing a technology solution for one of these problems.  No experience is necessary.  Prizes awarded are $1,000 for best team and $750 for runner-up team solutions; a $250 cash award is for the best solo solution.  

The areas to choose from are:
  • Pandemic Preparedness and Recovery
  • Inclusion, Diversity, and Intersectionality in the Tech Workforce
  • Building a More Connected, Smarter and Inclusive Tampa Bay

To learn more:

Support Gadgets for Good

Coastal High Hazard

The St. Pete City Council will be considering the next step in the 3+ year discussion about the Coastal High Hazard Area (CHHA) this Thursday. There are two items on the agenda:

First is the policy amendment to the Comprehensive Plan that is proposed to allow consideration of land use amendments that proposed an increase in density subject to 12 balancing review criteria, where 4 of the 12 are minimum mandatory criteria that must be met.

Second is the proposed amendments to the City’s Land Development Regulations (LDR) and Building Code that sets forth elevated design standards for multi-family residential buildings intended to result in structures which are more resilient to storm surge and sea level rise, mitigate for service and infrastructure needs during and immediately following a major storm event, and enable safe re-occupation as quickly as possible following an evacuation.

Both are important to consider for the future of housing and economic development across our City.  The Innovation District supports moving forward with these efforts.  There are still work to be done... but we need to continue to take steps for our future.  Here are links to useful information:
City Council Agenda and Support Materials
Reports, Presentations, Past Hearings, etc.
Visit our website calendar for details as events go virtual or are rescheduled.
Click Here for Additional Events and Information
Interested in moving your business to the Innovation District? 
Contact for
a list of lease and for sale properties.
Copyright © 2020 St Pete Innovation District, All rights reserved.

Contact Information:
Alison Barlow
Executive Director, St. Pete Innovation District

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St Pete Innovation District · 744 6th Avenue South · St Petersburg, Fl 33701 · USA

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