Becoming part of a Community
A recent post on our blog looked at the change in Australian neighbourhoods – high population density creates different communities to the ones in which our parents and grandparents were raised. For many reasons, including work schedules and apartment living, people now find difficulty in getting to know neighbours. This can lead to a ‘disconnect’ from the wider community.
Some urban planners and developers are taking note of this and are including facilities designed to bring people together within their communities. If you are someone who would prefer to live in a community – perhaps making a house/apartment feel more like home – here are some of the features you might find in new development that will assist.
Balcony flower pots & kitchen window herb trays can only take green thumbed garden lovers so far. The Australian City Farms & Community Gardens Network lists almost 150 gardens in the Melbourne area, allowing members to access shared plots that can produce all manner of agriculture and plant life. As a shared experience, it’s a great way to connect to other people on the community.
Just as the backyard veggie garden was a big part of the Australian backyard, the dog was also a typical feature – often to the detriment of the veggie garden! Now, with less backyards and more designer pooches (try asking your grandad if he had a labradoodle as a kid), spaces dedicated to our ‘fur children’ is important to lifestyle. It’s also a great way of meeting like-minded people.
Eat & Greet
Many communities now boast food hubs, which not only provide culinary treats but provide places where you can gather and meet other locals (some great examples can be found here, here and here). Far from the stuffy tea rooms of our grandparents’ day, there is always a funky café that welcomes the kids with a ‘babycino’ and even the ‘fur kids’ with a water bowl and doggy treats. What better way to meet your neighbours when they are enjoying the same great facilities as you are.
The next part of this post will look at some of the benefits of larger parklands to gaining a sense of community.