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La Harinera de Valencia has just been officially inaugurated. The official opening is graced by the presence of María José Catalá, the Mayor of the city, Paula Llobet, Councilor for Tourism, Digital Agenda, Innovation, and Investment, alongside various institutional authorities and key members from the Valencian entrepreneur and innovation ecosystem. Invest in Valencia’s director, María Escartí, has introduced the soft- landing services that will be offered from the new space. This historic Grao factory from the early 20th century is now poised to reawaken, harnessing the potential of its expansive 5,000 square meters of floor space. 

Inauguración Harinera

Designed to serve the city and, alongside Las Naves, emerge as the new public innovation entity, both entities boast an ambitious objective of positioning themselves as a significant innovation hub, akin to those in European cities such as Berlin, Paris, and Amsterdam, with a combined space of over 10,000 square meters. 

Beyond technological and innovation projects within the iconic Grao building, the initiative also includes the promotion of a gaming hub: Valencia Game City. Paula Llobet, Councillor for Tourism, Digital Agenda, Innovation, and Investment, highlights the remarkable standing of Spain’s premier training school and seventh globally, along with the international event Dreamhack, drawing 70,000 attendees annually. Llobet underscores the importance of fostering an industry that retains students in the city. 

In line with this vision, the initiative will offer training and support to universities, facilitating the integration of their students into the job market to promote quality employment and retain talent in the city. 

Investors meeting point 

One of the captivating initiatives set to unfold within the revamped Harinera is the introduction of a soft-landing service, aiding foreign companies seeking to invest in the city by streamlining legal and physical establishment processes.  

This will be a first point of contact for international companies, providing access to specialized talent, compatible spaces, and quality networking, with temporary offices available for their initial steps. 

Inside La Harinera de Valencia 

La Harinera, an industrial heritage of the city dating back to 1923, has undergone restoration that preserves its original essence while making it a functional space. The complex includes a main building with five floors, an annex building, a street-accessible cafeteria, a bioclimatic garden courtyard, and a third building. 

Situated on Juan Verdaguer Street, within La Marina de Valencia in the Grao district, La Harinera is part of the dynamic Poblados Marítimos, the city’s seafaring district. El Grao has seen the development of strategic projects in recent years, establishing itself as a hub for economic development and innovation, hosting various initiatives like EDEM Business School, Lanzadera business incubator, Angels investment company, Veles e Vents, Innsomnia accelerator, and coworking spaces like Wayco or Vortex, or the upcoming opening of The Terminal Hub. Today, it stands as a privileged location for entrepreneurship. 


The city of Valencia is firmly committed to fostering a sustainable society where innovation and entrepreneurship go hand in hand. Progressing in this direction, we are proud to announce a significant milestone that brings Valencia closer to the objectives outlined in Missions València 2030 and the Estrategia Urbana València 2030.

Valencia has been accepted into the European Network of Living Labs (ENoLL), recognizing the city’s efforts in promoting innovation. With this achievement, our city joins over 480 members in Europe and worldwide, comprising a prestigious and independent non-profit organization dedicated to fostering an open and global innovation ecosystem for co-creation and collaboration.

But what exactly is a Living Lab?

Living Labs (LLs) are open innovation ecosystems operating in real-life environments, employing interactive feedback processes throughout the lifecycle of innovation to generate sustainable impact. They emphasize co-creation, rapid prototyping and testing, as well as scaling-up innovations and businesses, thereby providing various forms of joint value to the involved stakeholders.

In this capacity, living labs serve as intermediaries and orchestrators among citizens, research organizations, companies, and government agencies.

This membership grants Valencia access to a range of resources and services, including tailored innovation programs, working groups of Living Labs members, and various networking activities.

Valencia submitted its application to become a Living Lab city last November and has recently received approval from ENoLL. Building upon this success, the city council has confirmed the imminent launch of the Valencia Urban Sandbox, the regulation of which has been under discussion over the past few months.

But what exactly is an Urban Innovation Sandbox?

A sandbox is a controlled and secure testing environment where technological innovations can undergo testing before being commercialized and implemented. The aim is to provide companies, startups, and academic institutions with a suitable location in the city to test their inventions with streamlined bureaucracy.

This initiative aligns with the goal of achieving climate neutrality by 2030 while promoting business productivity and competitiveness, contributing to the knowledge society, enhancing public services to meet evolving citizen needs, and fostering an innovative ecosystem and culture.

With the Living Lab and the Sandbox (almost) ready, Valencia now possesses two out of the three experimentation spaces prioritized by the European Commission to promote innovative experimentation policies among member states under public-private collaboration frameworks.