2023 Economic Development Summit

About the 2023 Economic Development Summit

Join IDA and the Downtown Norfolk Council for the Economic Development Summit on April 26-27, 2023. Whether you are new to the industry or a seasoned professional, you won’t want to miss this summit. Come together with like-minded economic development professionals and learn how to tell your story through data, explore creative approaches to entrepreneurship, gain a better understanding of innovation districts and dive into the new frontier of office space and the impact of hybrid work. Exciting and informative Master Talks and breakout sessions will focus on the importance of downtowns as major economic generators for cities. Industry leaders will review national trends and explore the potential for economic growth. Plus enjoy plenty of opportunities for networking and collaboration with other downtown professionals. 

The Downtown Norfolk Council, an award-winning urban place management organization comprised of more than 300 businesses and individual members, serves as the leading advocate for Downtown Norfolk and ensures Downtown’s position as the thriving and essential cultural, dining, commercial and residential hub of Hampton Roads. See you in Norfolk!  

Conference Details

The 2023 Economic Development Summit will be held at the Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel at 777 Waterside Dr, Norfolk, Virginia 23510 and at various locations throughout downtown Norfolk. 

Downtown Norfolk is THE place to be with a continually growing list of amazing things to do and see. Visit Downtown Norfolk Council’s website to download a PDF map, view an interactive directory or dining guide, explore Selden Market or discover the NEON District.  

Get social! What questions will you come ready to ask? Share them on Twitter #IDAEconDev23

Registration is now open for the 2023 Economic Development Summit. In order to register for the event, you need to either have an account in IDA’s database or you must create one. If you previously registered for an event in the past, you should have an account in the database. All below prices are USD. 

  • Early Bird Rate until Wednesday, March 15, 2023: $200 Member | $250 Nonmember
  • Standard Rate until Tuesday, April 18, 2023: $225 Member | $275 Nonmember
  • On-site Registration Rate available April 26-27, 2023: $250 Member | $300 Nonmember

Register Now

Cancellation Policy: Written notice of cancellation is required. Cancellations received via email by April 5, 2023 will receive a refund less a $100 processing fee. Cancellations received via email after April 5, 2023 will not be refunded. If a tour cancellation is received via email by April 5, 2023, there will be no penalty. Tour cancellations received via email after April 5, 2023 will not receive a refund. Refunds will be processed approximately 30 days after the event. Please send the cancellation notification to the International Downtown Association by emailing   

Substitutions: Substitutions of complete registrations (including tours and/or workshops) are gladly accepted prior to the event start date. Please submit a written request to before Monday, April 24, 2023 at 3 pm ET to complete your substitution. Only one substitution is permitted per original registrant and must be transferred to an individual in your organization. The individual submitting the substitution request is responsible for all financial obligations (any balance due) associated with that substitution.    

Adding a Pre-Conference Tour: Please note, the pre-conference tours sell out quickly. Therefore, it is advisable to add these items at the time of registration. If you are registering for someone else or a group, please find out their selection(s) prior to registering them. Although each person within the group can purchase a tour after they have been registered, they run the risk of the tour no longer being available.

Payment Methods: For your convenience, payments may be made by Visa, MasterCard or American Express. Should you need to pay by check, you will not be able to complete registration online. Please email for assistance.  

Outstanding Balance: Please note, if you have an outstanding balance for this event and/or tour(s), you will not receive your badge on-site or be allowed to attend tours until payment is received. Please contact prior to your arrival on-site to pay your outstanding balance.  

By registering you are agreeing to IDA’s Event Agreement and Code of Conduct and IDA Attendee Assumption of Risk, Waiver and Release Form.

The Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel, located at 777 Waterside Drive, Norfolk, VA 23510, is offering a rate of $172 USD per night for a standard room for summit attendees. Please book your room by Tuesday, April 4, 2023 online. Overnight self-parking is available for $14 + tax and valet parking is available for $30 + tax for hotel guests. Click here for more information.  

About Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel
With inspiring views of downtown Norfolk, Virginia and the Elizabeth River, the Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel boasts an eclectic restaurant, well-appointed rooms and 17 impressive event venues. Attractions such as Norfolk Naval Base, Town Point Park and Old Dominion University are nearby. Just outside the hotel, Norfolk is a hub for intriguing sightseeing and entertainment, including Nauticus and Chrysler Museum of Art. Enjoy the convenience of room service along with the luxury of a sleeping experience featuring pillowtop mattresses, soft duvets and hypo-allergenic pillows.

Don’t be Scammed by Third Party Housing Companies
The official hotel and overflow properties (if applicable) are listed above. Please beware of other companies soliciting hotel room “deals” over the dates of the event. Third party housing companies typically offer a higher rate than the official block rate. These company’s cancellation polices are often harsh and unforgiving. IDA is not working with any third parties to offer attendees accommodations! If you receive a solicitation and are unsure whether or not it is legitimate, please contact Lul Teklit at

Norfolk International Airport (ORF) is approximately 20 minutes (9 miles) from the Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel. Taxi/Uber/Lyft is approximately $20-30 USD one-way. 


IDA is committed to making our educational sessions accessible to everyone, regardless of ability, and to reasonably accommodating the assistive needs of our members, attendees and partners. We are actively working to increase the accessibility of our offerings. In so doing, we strive to comply with the available standards and guidelines under the Americans with Disabilities Act and related laws to the greatest extent possible. If you are having trouble accessing an IDA offering, or have a question regarding session accessibility features, please contact IDA at for assistance. 

By attending the 2023 Economic Development Summit, certified Leaders in Place Management will earn 6 credit hours toward the renewal of their LPM certification. Please visit to learn more about becoming certified or recording continuing education units. 

IDA is an AICP credit provider. AICP members can earn Certification Maintenance (CM) credits for sessions. When CM credits are available, they are noted in the program. IDA’s 2023 sessions provide are an easy way for AICP certified planners to earn their CM credits. 

Preview the schedule-at-a-glance below (program is subject to change). To see the full description, click on the down arrow next to the title. The program will be updated in the coming weeks. Please note, all times listed are Eastern Time and all prices are in USD.

For decades, urban place management professionals have acted as leaders of their communities by undertaking the strategic and visionary work of city building. IDA has developed seven official knowledge domains, recognizing the distinct areas of professional practice used to shape vibrant urban districts which anchor the well-being of towns, cities, and regions around the world. Content for IDA’s forums, summits and conferences is organized around this framework. The Economic Development Summit content is organized around the Economic Development domain. For more information about each domain, visit the Career Center. 

Conference Program

  • Wednesday 26 Apr 2023
  • Thursday 27 Apr 2023
  • Friday 28 Apr 2023

Wednesday 26 Apr 2023

  • Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel, Monticello Room Foyer (First Floor)
  • $25
Meeting Location:
  • Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel, 777 Waterside Dr, Hotel Lobby
  • Please meet no later than 12:40 p.m. in the hotel lobby
  • Visit the region’s first arts district, the NEON District (or New Energy of Norfolk), on the northern edge of downtown Norfolk. Anchored by large cultural institutions, the neighborhood has been the focus of development since a Better Block intervention jumpstarted grassroots, BID and municipal efforts in 2013. A new wave of residential development is poised to change the neighborhood dynamic yet again. The tour will explore an urban area on the cusp of significant residential growth, arts partnerships essential to building a backbone for the community, and the street art that started it all. *This tour is a walking tour; please plan accordingly.
Meeting Location:
  • Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel, 777 Waterside Dr, Hotel Lobby
  • Please meet no later than 12:40 p.m. in the hotel lobby
Description :
  • Tour the historic core of downtown Norfolk and witness firsthand the cycles of development and renewal through centuries of city building. Hear how the post-war boom and bust shaped Norfolk’s fabric and how city leaders used extensive planning efforts to recover from the tide of urban renewal. The tour will dive into the next phases of preservation, from the opportunities for redevelopment of historic buildings into housing, responding to sea level rise, to the challenges of extended BID services, neighborhood connectivity and affordability. *This tour is a walking tour; please plan accordingly.

Thursday 27 Apr 2023

  • Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel, Monticello Room Foyer (First Floor)

Friday 28 Apr 2023

  • $50
Meeting Location:
  • Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel, 777 Waterside Dr, Hotel Lobby
  • Please meet no later than 8:40 a.m. in the hotel lobby
  • Visit the hot up-and-coming neighborhood, the Railroad District, for an inside look at new residential developments, breweries, restaurants and retail. Centered on the tracks of the Norfolk and Western Railroad, this district encompasses a historic industrial area of Norfolk and is home to a growing number of young residents and innovative businesses. *This tour will include bus transportation and walking; please plan accordingly.


District Advocates


Interested in Sponsoring?

Develop your business through IDA’s trusted platform. Review the Summit opportunities to become a sponsor.

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Interested in Hosting?

If you are interested in hosting a future event, contact Lul Teklit, IDA’s Meeting Planner.  

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For assistance or further information, please contact the IDA registration team.

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