the porous city

The Third Place
"The social scientist Ray Oldenburg talks about how humans need a third place, besides work and home, to meet with friends, have a beer, discuss the events of the day, and enjoy some human interaction. Coffee shops, bars, hair salons, beer gardens, pool halls, clubs, and other hangouts are as vital as factories, schools and apartments ["The Great Good Place", 1989]."

For the record, I don't think online communities can be talked about as any kind of replacement. I don't think Joel does, either; the "third place" stuff is mostly a hook for what he wants to write about online communities. I'm more interested in reading Bowling Alone now, though.

Better: What is a third place?

Update: more fuel for my hatred of zoning laws. "The newer neighborhoods have developed under the single-use zoning imperative -- which makes these critical, informal social gathering places illegal."


last modified: 10:48:21 03-Mar-2003
in categories:Design/Architecture, People

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